AsianInvestor is due to host its 11th annual Investment Performance Awards dinner on May 24 in Hong Kong. This black-tie gala event is the capstone to a quantitative and qualitative process that begins now.

We have decided to make some important changes to our process to make our awards more competitive and more prestigious, and we outline the new requirements here.

Our 2012 awards fall into five categories: long-only, markets, hedge funds, private equity and marquee.

Long-only, hedge funds and private equity
A shortlist will be drawn up from institutional fund-performance data contributed by consulting groups, and we will contact the top performers in each asset class, in nominal and risk-adjusted returns, over one, three and five years. Don’t call us, we’ll call you.

Markets
AsianInvestor continues to recognise the best fund managers in each of the region’s markets. We will be contacting firms that we think should pitch. You can also contact us at editors@asianinvestor.net if you are either from that market or have an onshore presence there. We are not accepting pitches from purely offshore entities.

These awards mix product innovation, business growth, performance and industry leadership. There is only one award per market.

The markets are: Australia, China (onshore), China (CNH), Hong Kong MPF, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Malaysia: Islamic, Middle East, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam; plus ETFs (onshore and regional) and Reits (global and Asia-Pacific).

Send a written document to editors@asianinvestor.net outlining why you think you deserve this award. This must be a Word document of 700 words maximum. No images, biographies, graphs, appendices or other things that we’ll ignore or throw out. (We’re trying to save you time, too.)

Our editors will select pitches we think merit short-listing, and we will then line up either a face-to-face meeting or a phone call. The pitch document is “on the record”, the conversation is “off the record”.

Deadline for pitches: 12 noon on Friday, March 30. Please send your written pitches to editors@asianinvestor.net. If we haven’t received your pitch before we go to lunch, you’ll have to wait till next year.

Marquee awards
We are accepting pitches from asset management companies, both long-only and alternative, global and local, for several awards, outlined below.

Send a written document to editors@asianinvestor.net outlining why you think you deserve this award. This must be a Word document of 700 words maximum. No images, biographies, graphs, appendices or other things that we’ll ignore or throw out. (We’re trying to save you time, too.)

Our editors will select pitches we think merit short-listing, and we will then line up either a face-to-face meeting or a phone call. The pitch document is “on the record”, the conversation is “off the record”.

Deadline: 12 noon on Friday, March 30. We’re going out for lunch. If we haven’t received your written pitch, you’re out of luck.

The Marquee award categories are:

Best solutions provider: This award is meant to capture an investment firm that has accurately identified problems that its clients have faced, and developed a solution which worked. The timeframe is three years (i.e. 2009-11). Your clients may be institutional or wholesale, as long as they are based in Asia-Pacific or the Middle East.

What we do not want is for you to staple on something you’ve done in America or Europe, and call it a global solution. The strongest pitch will be tailored to conditions specific to Asia or individual markets in the region.

Best new product, retail: For either the region, or a particular market or set of markets in Asia Pacific or the Middle East. Timeline: launched in 2011. Tell us why this product is a winner, who’s distributing it, assets raised, performance so far, the philosophy behind the portfolio, what’s innovative about it, what sets it apart.

What is “retail”? We include high-net-worth products as retail, as well as those for the mass affluent and pure retail.

Best new product/strategy, institutional: This is either a mutual fund/unit trust or a privately placed product for Asian/Middle Eastern asset owners (SWFs, pension funds, insurance company general accounts, central banks, official institutions). Introduced in 2011, it is not meant to be a uniquely tailored solution for one key client, rather it is something for the institutional community in the region or a particular market. Global products are acceptable, but we want to know why yours is special for Asia-based investors: assets raised from this region, performance, innovation, how and where it’s managed, and so on.

Best business development: Had a great year raising assets from Asia-based clients, retail and/or institutional? Added new teams for client coverage? Engaged in amazing initiatives to make your business faster, stronger, better? Feel like you’re making a difference? Let us know about it. For calendar year 2011.

CIO of the year: You are an individual based in Asia-Pacific or the Middle East, and you have had superb performance over one, three and five years, both nominally and in risk-adjusted terms. You may be managing teams of portfolio managers, or running a particular fund by yourself. It could be local/onshore, or regional in scope, or global, in any asset class.

Shy about putting your hat in the ring? It’s okay, your query will be held in strict confidence, but if you or your colleagues think you’ve got a chance – email us at editors@asianinvestor.net.

Asset manager of the year: Your firm is able to combine a superb year in business development with innovation, strong performance, effective solutions, and all-around excellence. We will consider local firms, boutiques, big we-do-it-all players, multi-manager platforms, funds of funds – the works. You probably are pitching for one of our other marquee awards, or have been shortlisted in one of our other categories.

Not sure how to position this? Explain how you have helped your clients since the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008, and navigated these choppy waters since. If you have been winning market share, notching good performance, and meeting your Asian clients’ needs consistently throughout, you deserve a hearing from us.

Distributor of the year: We will be looking up those consumer banks, private banks and insurance companies that we think should compete for this trio of awards. We are not evaluating these businesses per se, but their effectiveness in selling quality fund products, regionally or in a particular market. If you want your organisation to be considered, or if you would like to nominate one of your distributors, please let us know at editors@asianinvestor.net.

Institutional investor of the year: If you have a client that has demonstrated skill, professionalism and good stewardship of assets under its care, we’d like to know. Any nominations will be held in strict confidence. If you work at such an organisation and want to be considered, please let us know at editors@asianinvestor.net. Again, your communication will remain confidential. We will also be contacting those organisations we think could win.