With so many thematic ETFs currently entering the market, “a theme needs to be very long term, very developed and very, frankly, investable,” according to Lauren Hein, head of advisor relations at ROBO Global.
“We’re looking for something where you can invest in the companies that are developing the technology but also the companies that are utilizing that technology,” Hein told NYSE’s Judy Shaw for ETF Leaders, powered by the New York Stock Exchange.
In the interview, which was conducted at Exchange: An ETF Experience 2022, Hein said that ROBO Global is “looking for something where you can invest in the companies that are developing the technology but also the companies that are utilizing that technology.” She cited the ROBO Global Robotics & Automation Index ETF (ROBO), which owns “companies that are developing the sensing, the computing, the artificial intelligence but also the healthcare applications and 3D printing applications.”
“So, a very broad and long-term developing theme we think is very important,” Hein said.
The ROBO Global executive also explained that “some sort of thematic exposure is really crucial to an advisor’s overall portfolio.” While it used to be acceptable to have a 5% allocation to disruptive technology, nowadays, a lot of ROBO Global’s clients are wanting to own an automation or an AI fund alongside an S&P 500 index fund or the Qs in their core portfolio, so that they’re “owning the disruptors and the disruptees.”
In terms of the issuer’s big focus areas for the year, broadly speaking, ROBO Global is “very excited about the robotics and automation space right now.” Specifically, the firm is seeing automation solve a lot of problems with wage inflation within the labor market. Plus, Hein said that ROBO Global has “seen supply chain disruption for several years now, and companies that we invest in are working behind the scenes to solve those problems,” before adding: “Healthcare is experiencing a labor shortage right now, so our automation stocks are continuing to help them solve problems.”
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