Our History

With roots dating back to 1987, we have a reputation of being owners, operators and insightful investors.
Financial Records

Portland invests in publicly traded equities and private and alternative securities globally on behalf of retail and institutional clients. Portland is an Investment Fund Manager, Portfolio Manager and Exempt Market Dealer. With investor roots dating back to 1987, we have a reputation for being Owners and Operators thus we are insightful Investors.

Michael Lee-Chin purchased AIC Limited (AIC) in 1987 for $200,000; by the mid nineties and under Michael’s stewardship, AIC became Canada’s largest privately held mutual fund company. In September 2009 many of the investment funds managed by AIC were transferred to Manulife Mutual Funds, a division of Manulife Asset Management Limited. AIC was the second business which Michael built from the ground up and sold to Manulife; in 2007 Manulife Financial purchased the Berkshire-TWC Financial Group, an investment dealer with approximately 1,000 financial advisors and $12.5 billion in assets under administration.

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Financial Records

Michael Lee-Chin, Chairman of Portland Holdings, is one of the most successful business people and investors in the world. As a Canadian entrepreneur, Michael grew a number of private businesses into prominent global brands:

  • Berkshire-TWC Financial Group – One of the largest independent financial advisory firms in Canada (Sold to Manulife Financial in 2007)
  • AIC Limited – Largest privately held mutual fund company in Canada in the mid-nineties (sold to Manulife Financial in 2009)
  • National Commercial Bank Jamaica Limited – Largest bank by market share and profits in Jamaica
  • Columbus International Inc. - Broadband provider to 22 countries
  • Global Real Estate Portfolio
  • Advantage General Insurance Company
  • Portland Private Equity L.P.
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Man with a Tablet

Portland Private Equity is a private equity fund management company currently focused on private equity growth opportunities in the broader Caribbean region through its management of the AIC Caribbean Fund and its successor, Portland Caribbean Fund II.

Clients:

  • Canadian Government Agency
  • Division of the European Union
  • United States Government Agency
  • Prominent U.S. Pension and Endowment Funds
  • Multinational Insurance Company

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Experienced Portfolio Management Team

Over 120 years combined business and portfolio management experience. Our team has held CEO and Senior Executive positions in Canada and around the globe in various industries including: Banking, Wealth Management, Retail, Infrastructure etc. Our Portfolio Managers combine their extensive experience and judgement with in-depth research to make investments that are consistent with Portland Investment Counsel’s Investment Philosophy and the client’s objectives.

Michael Lee-Chin photo
Executive Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and Portfolio Manager

There is no secret to Michael’s extraordinary business and investment success. He’s always been very vocal about his deliberate approach to both. It all started in 1978, when, as a young investment advisor seeking to deliver the highest value add to his clients by making them wealthy, he developed a framework that would guide his principles for life, business and investing. This framework later became known as the ’5 laws of wealth creation’, which drive his investment behavior. The ‘5 laws of wealth creation’ are complemented by the 10 traits he seeks out in successful businesses.

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Robert Almeida photo
Senior Vice President and Portfolio Manager

Robert Almeida brings a strong business management perspective to the Portfolio Management Team. Robert has over 30 years experience, both as an Investor and as a Business Executive. Robert is also a founding Partner of Portland Private Equity and a Managing Partner of the AIC Caribbean Fund and Portland Caribbean Fund II, private equity funds with capital commitments from institutional investors in Europe, United States, Canada and the Caribbean.

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Chris Wain-Lowe photo
Chief Investment Officer, Executive Vice-President and Portfolio Manager

Chris Wain-Lowe has 40 years of business management and global financial services experience – living and working in four continents: Europe, Asia, Africa, North America as well as the Caribbean, with corporate finance experience in the energy, natural resources, shipping and utility industries. Having been Chief Executive Officer of various financial services companies, Chris’ first-hand knowledge and understanding of those businesses embraces being both a businessman and an investor.

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James Cole photo
Senior Vice President and Portfolio Manager

James has 35 years of investment experience including 26 years as a portfolio manager responsible for Canadian and U.S. equities. Investment funds managed by James have received several national awards including Canadian Hedge Fund Awards, Lipper Awards, FundGrade A+ Awards and the Private Capital Markets Association of Canada Investment Fund of the Year Award.

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Dragos Berbecel photo
Portfolio Manager

Dragos Berbecel has 20 years of experience, both as an investment professional and a business operator. He has devoted the last 10 years to being a student and practitioner of focused value investing. Dragos leverages more than a decade of experience as a marketing and sales executive working in diverse industries in Europe and North America.

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Dragos Stefanescu photo
Portfolio Manager

Dragos has an MBA from University of British Columbia and is a CFA charter member. His investment methodology is in alignment with the Manager’s framework. Dragos brings a plethora of wealth management experience including 16 years with the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan where he held various positions, the last of which was Director, Global Equities.

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Kyle Ostrander photo
Portfolio Manager

Kyle received his Master of Finance degree from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto and was awarded Dean’s List, First Class for being in the top 10 percent of students in the program. Kyle earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 2018.

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