Heather Ritchie

Not afraid to invest heavily in a company or sector when she likes what she sees.

Jade Hemeon 20 February, 2004 | 2:00PM
Heather Ritchie, manager ofLegg Mason Canadian Growth Equity, is an intrepid world traveller. Experiencing the culture, customs and economic realities of places such as China, Japan and South America have given her helpful insights that she applies to stock picking in her small-cap fund.

"Travel has helped me to understand what other countries are going through and to gain insight into global political and economic trends," says Ritchie, senior portfolio manager at Legg Mason Canada Inc. in Toronto. "You can see things coming, like the drop in the U.S. dollar, and can analyze the impact on Canadian companies. If you don't graft on the macro factors that can affect companies, your unitholders will suffer."

Ritchie, who has been the sole manager of the $36.6-million Legg Mason Canadian Growth Equity since July 2002, concentrates on small- and mid-sized companies with outstanding float capitalizations of less than $1 billion. She says there's no floor on size except her need to maintain liquidity, and that some of the "real gems" have a market cap of less than $100 million.

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Jade Hemeon

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