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September 9, 2021 | U.S. Equity
Our Value Approach

Head of U.S. Value Equity Team, Portfolio Manager

William Heaphy, CFA, is the head of the U.S. value equity team. He is also a portfolio manager for William Blair’s small- to mid-cap value equity strategies and a research analyst focusing on the real estate sector. He joined the firm in his current role in 2021. Before joining William Blair, Bill worked at ICM, where he was chief investment officer of the small- to mid-cap value equity teams and a member of the management committee. Before joining ICM in 1994 as part of the equity research department, Bill was an associate in the Baltimore law firm of Ober, Kaler, Grimes and Shriver, and a staff auditor with Price Waterhouse. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. Bill received a B.S. from Lehigh University and a J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law.

RELATED STRATEGIES:


Small-Cap Value

RESEARCH ANALYST

Matthew Fleming, CFA, is a research analyst for William Blair’s small- to mid-cap value equity strategies. He focuses on the energy, utilities, and industrials sectors. Before joining William Blair in 2021, Matt was a member of the small- to mid-cap value equity teams at ICM. Before joining ICM in 2008, Matt was a senior research analyst at PNC Capital Advisors/Mercantile Capital Advisors from 2004 to 2008. Before becoming a research analyst, Matt held various roles at GB Asset Advisors, Triumph Group, and BT Alex. Brown/Deutsche Bank AG. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. Matt received a B.A. in history from Princeton University.

RELATED STRATEGIES:


Small-Cap Value

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High-quality value—not deep value—defines our U.S. value equity team’s approach to value investing. The team seeks stocks that are industry leaders at a discount to their intrinsic value, and with potential limited downside.

Watch the video or read the recap below.

Our team’s approach to value investing is not deep value, but high-quality value.

We’re looking for stocks that we think are industry leaders as evidenced by demonstrable characteristics, such as high returns on capital, barriers to entry, high margins.

And we’re trying to find these high-quality companies that are temporarily mispriced, for one reason or another. We’re trying to buy them at a discount to not only what we think their intrinsic value is, but also with a potentially very limited downside.

We’re always trying to find companies that trade at a discount to the whole small-cap universe.

—William Heaphy, CFA

When we approach valuation, we’re trying to buy companies that are undervalued on an absolute basis. So, we’re always trying to find companies that trade at a discount to the whole small-cap universe.

Beyond that, we’re really trying to triangulate three things.

One, we’re trying to buy companies that trade at a discount to other peer companies.

Two, we’re trying to think about, “Are we buying companies that are trading at a discount to private market values?”

But third, which is really the core of our rigor, is that for every company we’re looking at, we look at how the company’s traded on a 5-, 10-, 20-year basis on a number of valuation factors.

What are the specific advantages that allows that company to the sustain higher margins, higher returns that we’re looking for?

—Matthew Fleming, CFA

We talk about the quality of management. We talk about the quality of the operations. We talk about the moats. What are the specific advantages that allows that company to the sustain higher margins, higher returns that we’re looking for?

And so, if our investment thesis plays out, we want to be buying the company at the lower end of its historical trading range.

William V. Heaphy, CFA is a portfolio manager on and head of William Blair’s U.S. Value Equity team.

Matthew Fleming, CFA is a research analyst on William Blair’s U.S. Value Equity team.

Head of U.S. Value Equity Team, Portfolio Manager

William Heaphy, CFA, is the head of the U.S. value equity team. He is also a portfolio manager for William Blair’s small- to mid-cap value equity strategies and a research analyst focusing on the real estate sector. He joined the firm in his current role in 2021. Before joining William Blair, Bill worked at ICM, where he was chief investment officer of the small- to mid-cap value equity teams and a member of the management committee. Before joining ICM in 1994 as part of the equity research department, Bill was an associate in the Baltimore law firm of Ober, Kaler, Grimes and Shriver, and a staff auditor with Price Waterhouse. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. Bill received a B.S. from Lehigh University and a J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law.

RELATED STRATEGIES:


Small-Cap Value

RESEARCH ANALYST

Matthew Fleming, CFA, is a research analyst for William Blair’s small- to mid-cap value equity strategies. He focuses on the energy, utilities, and industrials sectors. Before joining William Blair in 2021, Matt was a member of the small- to mid-cap value equity teams at ICM. Before joining ICM in 2008, Matt was a senior research analyst at PNC Capital Advisors/Mercantile Capital Advisors from 2004 to 2008. Before becoming a research analyst, Matt held various roles at GB Asset Advisors, Triumph Group, and BT Alex. Brown/Deutsche Bank AG. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. Matt received a B.A. in history from Princeton University.

RELATED STRATEGIES:


Small-Cap Value

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