July 22 2013, London: The Oracle Paradis Wine Fund announced it had hit US$5 million of funds under management, only 6 months after the fund’s launch.
“This is a landmark achievement for a fund of this kind,” said David Nathan-Maister, director of the fund and a former wine producer and expert on spirits. “It shows that, despite a turbulent market, a well-managed fund with a distinct and diversified approach can be very successful.”
The fund invests in world-class Bordeaux and Burgundy wines and rare collector’s wines such as early vintage port, 18th and 19th century Madeira and pre-Imperial era Tokaji. However, it is the inclusion of cognacs, primarily from the 18th and 19th centuries, and pre-1940 whiskies, that distinguishes the Oracle Paradis Wine Fund from its competitors.
“Historically, the finest and rarest cognacs have had an honoured place in the cellars of serious wine collectors. In the last two decades, however, the Asian-led boom in fine wine has largely passed vintage cognac by,” explains Nathan-Maister.
“As a result, a late 18th century or early 19th century cognac that would have been worth the equivalent of a case of Chateau Lafite 20 years ago, might today be worth no more than one or two bottles. We think this is an indication that the market is badly out of kilter.”
The Oracle Paradis Wine Fund has exploited this out-of-kilter market and made investments based on the notion that the historical relationships that have been valid for most of the last century will ultimately re-assert themselves.
“In simple terms: we think Chateau Lafite is probably too expensive, and 19th century cognac probably too cheap,” Nathan-Maister said. “We anticipate that over the next 5 to 10 years the price of the finest vintage cognacs will show a substantial increase."
Investors in the fund have come from across the globe, with an increasing amount of interest from the Far East.
“The growing middle-class in the region, and particularly in China, is becoming more sophisticated in its investment choices, and a well-diversified fund like Oracle Paradis has proven attractive,” explains Yury Gantman, the CEO of Oracle Capital Group. “We’re confident this interest will only continue grow, and we intend to expand our footprint in the area.”
The fund continues to use its expertise and extensive network to acquire rare and notable items, such as bottles of Cognac Clos de Griffier 1789 from the cellars of the famous La Tour d'Argent restaurant in Paris. Mr Nathan-Maister will give nothing away, but he hints that the fund has significant purchases planned for the near future.
“The success of the Oracle Paradis fund is a welcome reminder that a distinctive and diversified approach to investment is a smart approach,” Nathan-Maister explained. “However, we are not taking anything for granted, and have further exciting investments to announce soon.”