Portugal GV Fund Comparison?

Apart from Bison, depository FATCA-compliant services are also offered by BiG and Atlantico Europa (necessary for US investors going for the fund route). BiG has been offering these services longer, so probably a safer option. Bordr.io can indeed help with opening an Atlantico bank account ($10 off the price with NOMADGATE code). Millennium does not offer depository services for US investors.

I double-checked with Bison, and they have set a cut-off date of November 5 for new bank account openings for GV investors wanting to complete their GV application within this year. This means that the person applying for a bank account needs to have a NIF number already and all the original forms and certified copies of the documents need to arrive at their offices latest by November 5. If someone doesn’t have a NIF number, they will get refused already now considering the time constraints.


Pardon my ignorance, what is BPI and ATH?

Geez, I wish I knew about bordr, that sounds super convenient. My lawyer is great but it’s all email and a bit less streamlined than they look.

Do the bank accounts they open do the IMGA fund investment, or no?

It’s not clear to me that the Bordr bank account is an investment account that you can hold fund shares (“participation units”) in. It looks like a regular bank account which you can use for daily banking or to fund a real estate transaction.

I used Bordr for getting a NIF and was happy with the service, but I’m not sure this offering is what you are looking for.

Great News!!! :grinning:

For those who are also trying to get a 350k investment and GV app submitted by December 31, I have found some sources that should be able to get this accomplished. The biggest delay currently is the FBI Background check/ Federal apostille (which is now taking 6 weeks). This gives you time to get all the other stuff done.

Please feel free to PM (and if you’re in the US also send me your phone number, and I’d be happy to chat). Too detailed to expound here.

I had checked IMGA Açoes Portugal’s official page before and as far as I remember, their market cap was around 33m at the end of June. And their market cap is 47m at the end of September. So it is a considerable increase but not that much. If all of the 14m comes from GV investors, that makes just 40 investors. I suppose that is not a huge number to affect the PSI index.

Yes (call it 35 or so if you take into account the 7% rise in the fund price over that period). It looks like BPI Portugal has had inflows of about EUR 2m since June, so at most another six GV investors there.

IMGA is about EUR 47m, and BPI Portugal about EUR 27m. By comparison, the value of the Portuguese listed equity market is about EUR 80bn. So these two open-ended funds make up less than 0.1% of the market. I don’t think additional investment in these two funds is moving the needle.

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Actually, this is quite fun. With BPI Portugal I can get daily data on the fund value and total assets, and deduce their daily net inflows. Most days it’s plus or minus up to EUR 50,000, but some days it’s suspiciously close to EUR 350k. Here are the days since 2018 they had a net inflow of EUR 300k-370k. If you made a GV investment in BPI Portugal in the last four years, it was probably on or around one of these dates:

13 Aug 2018
23 May 2019
2 Jul 2019
9 Sep 2019
27 Sep 2019
26 Nov 2019
20 Jul 2020
17 Aug 2020
17 Dec 2020
7 Jun 2021
28 Jun 2021
5 Aug 2021
17 Sep 2021
27 Sep 2021 (x2)
28 Sep 2021
30 Sep 2021


Hi Kevin,

Just wanted to chime in here :wave:

We (Bordr) have recently added support for Golden Visa investors who need to open a bank account remotely and are currently opening accounts with Millennium BCP (for all investors except US) and Atlantico (only for US investors).

As Hanna mentioned, Millennium cannot be used by US investors for the Golden Visa fund option. Because of this, we are working with Atlantico to open accounts for US investors.

In terms of turnaround time, the bank account opening process takes about 3-4 weeks from the time you place your order to the time that your account has been opened and you receive your bank account details. This timeline applies to both banks.

As Ben mentioned, the account opening process usually takes less than 1 week to open the account after all of the signed documents have been received. This week is included in the 3-4 week estimated timeline above.

In addition to being an investment account to hold your shares, Millennium and Atlantico both include daily banking services with your account (e.g. debit cards, credit cards, and a dedicated account manager).

Some additional notes:

  • You will need your NIF in order to place your bank order. We’re currently seeing turnaround times of less than 1 week to get a NIF.
  • US investors interested in the GV real estate option are able use Millennium
  • Atlantico only supports GV accounts for investors interested in the fund option

Hope that helps!

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Hi Bill - Did you end up investing in any funds? Which ones? Why? Thanks!!

Nice to see this. This seems like a great option for people. I wish you guys had launched it a few months ago!

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I did not invest in an open fund, so this is only of academic interest to me, but 33m to 47m is a 50% increase in assets in a quarter. That seems to be significant impact to any fund - now the key metric is less the size of the Portuguese equity market, but the combined market cap of the underlying securities in the IMGA Acoes index relative to this 47m - I remember seeing that there are only about 18 companies or so that comprise most of the IMGA Acoes holdings, though I don’t recall seeing what their combined market cap was. All of this 50% additional assets basically gets deployed into those 18 or so companies (for the most part), it has to upset the P/Es of those companies massively?

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The thing is, the 18+ holdings that these funds have basically comprise the Portuguese equity market. Lisbon only has about 45 active stocks, half of which are really too small to be investable, and the PSI20 is 98% of the total market. The companies IMGA is invested in have a combined market cap of EUR 78bn.

To take an example, at the end of July IMGA had 806,000 shares of Navigator, a pulp and paper company. If IMGA doubled in size in three months (due to the arrival of about 100 GV investors), it would need to buy another 806,000 Navigator shares (or 0.1% of the shares in issue).

In this scenario, IMGA would be buying 12,000 shares per trading day. About 900,000 shares of Navigator trade in the market per day, so this would be about 1% of daily volume. That’s not going to drive the price higher (and even if it did, institutional investors would start selling Portuguese paper companies and buying Finnish paper companies as an arbitrage trade).

I suspect GV money could drive up valuations of small startup companies in private equity funds, or of EUR 500,000 apartments, but I don’t think IMGA/BPIP are influencing the share price of major listed companies.

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I wonder if it’s possible to do 50/50 IMGA/BPI, thus reducing the correction risk (or it will just complicate the matters).

You might, but I suspect both funds are likely to perform similarly in a market correction. Here’s a chart showing total return since 1/1/1997 - so for example BPI Portugal has trebled in value (+200% performance) in that time. As you’d expect, both funds are highly correlated to the PSI-20, although there’s some active management going around which accounts for the differences in returns between the funds.

(NB my understanding is that US investors can’t access BPI Portugal.)

Still, it appears that IMGA has less appreciated compared to BPI, perhaps due to the lower fees there

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For those of you interested or already invested in the Bluecrow growth fund, I just had a call with the manager. It went well and a couple things I would like to share/ask:

  1. AUM has surged to almost 70mm with 30mm in cash. Almost too popular? With 55-60% US investors. If anything, lower expectations for returns going forward?
  2. the fund has a duration of 15 years (counting from 2018), the early exit for GV investors is possible through a vote (51%) but it is not guaranteed to happen. Should the investors plan on 2033 exit instead? Any insight on how the vote process works for early exit? Also, there’s a possibility that the manager can list the fund on the exchange which will make the exit far easier and flexible, but it again requires a vote in 2023 when the subscription period ends. The outcome is not guaranteed and the cost of listing will be taken out of the fund NAV.
    Would love to hear thoughts on this! Thanks!

Hi @luzudizi, I am chatting with Blue Crow tomorrow (they are on my short list) and have the exact same concerns as you regarding fund size and term.

Regarding size, a big positive for me is that they have 35m invested already and claim to be maintaining yields at >6% even for newer investments. Still, at their current rate they will have no trouble reaching 90m target AUM and that it may be challenge to put that much money to work before the 1st half of 2023 when the expect to be fully invested.

On fund duration I think there will be enough pressure to successfully vote on an early exit, though I imagine it would require organization and work on GV investors’ part. I’m not optimistic about a listing as there isn’t much of an equity market in Portugal much less for an asset like this.

I imagine what they are saying is that they are finding investments that are netting 6% still. That’s not the same as them being able to return 6% to the investors. There is no way they can be doing that with so much cash. The risk is more that they will have to chase lower quality assets in order to maintain the yield level because there aren’t enough opportunities out there to absorb so much capital.

But, the die is cast one way or the other.

Good analysis. It’s simple math, really. If you have 30M invested at 6% and 60M invested at -0.10%, then you can see the obvious problem there.

Not exactly realistic, but it would be interesting to see a comparison of GV fund performances.