1. Japanese Smaller Companies Fund

    Japanese Smaller Companies Fund

  2. Overview

    The Japanese Smaller Companies Fund aims to outperform (after deduction of costs) the MSCI Japan Small Cap Index, as stated in Sterling, by at least 1.5% per annum over rolling five-year periods. There is no guarantee that this objective will be achieved over any time period and actual investment returns may differ from this objective, particularly over shorter time periods.

    The manager believes this is an appropriate benchmark given the investment policy of the Fund and the approach taken by the manager when investing. In addition, the manager believes an appropriate performance comparison for this Fund is the Investment Association Japanese Smaller Companies Sector.

    We add value through the use of proprietary, fundamental research which prioritises the selection of individually attractive companies rather than the taking of top-down industry bets.

    Performance & Portfolio

    Periodic Performance

    All figures to 30/04/2023

    6 Months

    1 Year

    3 Years

    5 Years

    Class B-Acc -0.1%2.7%-3.7%-2.8%
    Index* 7.8%7.7%4.8%1.0%
    Target Benchmark** 8.6%9.4%6.4%2.5%
    Sector Average*** 2.1%3.3%4.7%0.9%
    Sector Ranking 4/84/88/88/8

    Annual Discrete Performance to 31 March each year

    Annual percentage return (Updated Quarterly)






    Class B-Acc -0.7%-14.7%47.9%-25.7%-4.4%
    Index* -4.8%-6.2%24.4%-7.7%5.4%
    Target Benchmark** -3.4%-4.8%26.3%-6.3%7.0%
    Sector Average*** -7.6%-7.8%41.5%-10.0%0.7%

    Please bear in mind that past performance is not a guide to future performance.

    The value of your investment may go down as well as up, and you may not get back the amount you invested.

    Performance source: FE, Revolution, MSCI, total return in sterling.
    *MSCI Japan Small Cap Index.
    **MSCI Japan Small Cap Index (in sterling) plus at least 1.5% per annum over rolling five-year periods.
    ***IA Japanese Smaller Companies Sector.

    Figures for 3 and 5 years show the annual rate of return.

    Performance - 30/04/2023

    The value of your investment may go down as well as up, and you may not get back the amount you invested.
    Source: FE and relevant underlying index provider, single pricing basis, total return.
    Please bear in mind that past performance is not a guide to future performance.
    The graph is rebased to 100.

    Top Ten Holdings - 30/04/2023

    Fund %
    1 MatsukiyoCocokara 3.6%
    2 Descente 3.4%
    3 Nakanishi 3.0%
    4 TechnoPro 2.7%
    5 Cosmos Pharmaceutical 2.7%
    6 Yonex 2.6%
    7 RakSul 2.6%
    8 Asahi Intecc 2.4%
    9 Nifco 2.4%
    10 Tsugami 2.4%
    Total 27.7%

    Fund %

    • 1 Industrials 29.68
    • 2 Consumer Discretionary 18.20
    • 3 Information Technology 15.09
    • 4 Financials 10.24
    • 5 Consumer Staples 8.15
    • 6 Health Care 7.71
    • 7 Communication Services 6.40
    • 8 Materials 3.34
    • 9 Real Estate 1.89
    • 10 Cash -0.70
    • Total 100.00

    As the Fund invests in overseas securities, changes in the rates of exchange may cause the value of your investment (and any income it may pay) to go down or up.
    The information contained on this page is intended as a guide only and should not be relied upon when making investment decisions. All holdings information is unaudited. Source Baillie Gifford & Co.
    Please note that totals may not add due to rounding.

    Meet the Manager

    Praveen Kumar

    Praveen is an Investment Manager in the Japanese Equities Team. He is the Manager of the Japanese Smaller Companies fund (and related Japan Small Cap strategy segregated accounts), Manager of the Shin Nippon Investment Trust, and Deputy Manager of the Baillie Gifford Japan Trust Plc. He is also a member of the International Smaller Companies Portfolio Construction Group (PCG). Praveen graduated BEng in Computer Science from Bangalore University in 2001, and an MBA from the University of Cambridge in 2008. He previously worked for FKI Logistex before joining Baillie Gifford in 2008. After completing the investment graduate trainee programme Praveen joined the Japanese Equities Team as an Investment Manager in 2011.

    Paul Schwerda

    Paul is an Investment Manager in the Japanese Equities Team, and co-manager of the Japanese Smaller Companies Fund. Paul joined Baillie Gifford in 2018 after he graduated PhD in South Asian Studies from Harvard University in 2017. Prior to this he gained an AM in South Asian Studies from Harvard University in 2015 and an MA in Indian Studies from the University of Tübingen in 2011. Reflecting his long-standing fascination with Japan and his experience of living there, Paul is particularly interested in identifying those companies that will shape Japan’s economic future. Furthermore, he is intrigued by questions of impact and ESG and keen to explore them in a Japanese context.

    How to Invest

    You can invest in our funds via a number of fund platforms and supermarkets, please see the links opposite. Information on the range of funds available through platforms can be found in our Platform Matrix.

    Please note that we do not have the facility for you to invest directly with us in our Investment Trusts and we do not offer ISAs, SIPPS or Share Plans.

    Please also note that we do not have an online service for individual investors.

    Further information on our funds can be found in the relevant Key Investor Information and Prospectus Documents, which are available in English and will be sent to you free of charge on request.

    Baillie Gifford does not sponsor, maintain or have any control over the content of any other websites. Therefore, we are not responsible for the adequacy or accuracy of any of the information you may view, nor do we undertake to ensure successful transmission to any linked website.

    How to Invest

    Getting Financial Advice

    At Baillie Gifford we don’t provide financial advice, but we do try our best to provide you with all the information we think you might need to make investment decisions. Of course, we realise there are occasions when you may want the advice of an expert.

    Using professional financial advice

    An authorised intermediary can give you advice and help on how best to manage your financial affairs based on your circumstances and investment aspirations. They can also help keep track of all your different investment interests, saving you a lot of time and bookkeeping.

    Finding a financial adviser near you

    If you want to use an authorised intermediary, MyLocalAdviser is a website that allows you to search for authorised intermediaries in your area. You can visit their site on www.mylocaladviser.co.uk


    You can access any literature about the Fund here, either by downloading or requesting a copy by post (where available).

    To download any document you will need Adobe Reader. Please note that we can now provide you with Braille and audio transcriptions of our literature on request. It may take up to 10 days for the transcription to be completed dependent on the size of the document.


    General Investment Risk

    Investment markets can go down as well as up and market conditions can change rapidly. The value of an investment in the Fund, and any income from it, can fall as well as rise and investors may not get back the amount invested.


    Custody of assets involves a risk of loss if a custodian becomes insolvent or breaches duties of care.

    Smaller Companies

    Investment in smaller companies is generally considered higher risk as the market for their shares may be less liquid and more difficult to trade than that for larger companies. As a result, share price fluctuations may be greater. In addition smaller companies may not do so well in periods of adverse economic conditions. Where such companies have business models and competitive positions which are less well established, this could result in an increased likelihood of loss for investors.

    Market Conditions

    Any value assigned to illiquid securities which are difficult to trade, such as those in smaller companies, may not accurately reflect the price the Fund might receive upon their sale.

    Single Country

    The Fund’s exposure to a single market and currency may increase share price movements.

    Foreign Currency

    The Fund has exposure to foreign currencies and changes in the rates of exchange will cause the value of any investment, and income from it, to fall as well as rise and you may not get back the amount invested.


    The Fund’s share price can be volatile due to movements in the prices of the underlying holdings and the basis on which the Fund is priced.


    A dilution adjustment may apply when you buy or sell shares in the Fund. This is applied to the share price and may reduce the return on your investment.

    Fees from Revenue

    Where possible, charges are taken from the Fund's revenue. Where there is insufficient revenue, the remainder will be taken from capital. This will reduce the capital value of your investment.

    Tax Rates

    Tax rates and the tax treatment of OEICs can change at any time.