News about the coronavirus (COVID-19) has been as prevalent as the virus itself, the overwhelm of information (and in some cases misinformation) has had an impact throughout the country and particularly in financial markets across the globe.

At Flagship Investments Limited (FSI) we are not qualified to assess the humanitarian impact of the virus, nor can we say how long the whole situation will last. We thank the medical and scientific community for their efforts in trying to solve the problem and caring for those impacted. We also acknowledge those leaders in the world who are providing rational, clear guidance to maintain the safety of the population.

FSI through the dedication of our Manager maintains diligent observation of events and the impacts on underlying revenue, cashflows, net assets, supply chains, etc of our investee companies. Some of this analysis comes from the public updates released to the market as well as comparison data points from private businesses who operate globally and can provide comments on a number of aspects of their ongoing operations. They continue to monitor the situation as it progresses and do not believe that drastic measures are required.

FSI maintains our philosophy to be a long-term investor and that our investments over a three to five-year period will provide superior performance. With a long-term view on the current situation, one can gain valuable context of the daily movements in the market. For example, during the SARS outbreak between February 2003 and July 2003 the ASX All Ordinaries only dropped 5.35% to 2778.4 during February and by December 2003 was at 3306.0 (+19.0%). During the GFC, September 2008 to June 2009 the All Ords moved from 5209.2 to 3937.8 (-24.4%) and by December 2009 it was 4882.7 (+24.0%). We don’t know how long the current situation will last but we can be confident that with a three to five-year horizon our performance will continue to provide Shareholder value.

On this note, we highlight that our Chairman, Dominic McGann, and Managing Director, Manny Pohl, have increased their holdings in the Company and we congratulate our Shareholders who are also taking a similar long-term view and maintaining their ownership in the Company. By avoiding the noise of the crowd and staying calm and rational the value of our Company is preserved.

Perspective comes from distance and we are looking towards the future when this period will be a blip on the charts of history.

Scott Barrett
Company Secretary