AB International Health Care Portfolio

Focusing on Business, not Science



Healthcare. It’s something that everyone needs. And it’s always in demand, whatever the income level or economic condition.

The pandemic brought about an explosion in the use of telemedicine. Now, technological innovation such as artificial intelligence is set to further transform healthcare.

Increasing life expectancy, a greater focus on health and well-being, and industry innovation are expected to drive further changes and shape the future of healthcare - all of which present ample investment opportunities.

How should one capitalize on these opportunities?

The AB International Health Care Portfolio aims to generate excess returns by picking quality healthcare companies with good growth potential. 

Structural Changes Offer Long-term Potential
  • Healthcare is benefiting from long-term, structural changes worldwide. Aging demographics and technological innovation are among the key factors supporting future growth. Meanwhile, governments are under pressure to cut healthcare costs just as demand for health services is accelerating.

  • Companies that can improve the quality of healthcare provision while keeping costs manageable will be well placed to benefit from rising demand, which fosters durable growth. 
Shield icon for Risk Appetite
Less Sensitive to Economic Swings
  • Healthcare is generally regarded as defensive because of its resilience in downturns. Anyone who needs medical attention rarely wait for an economic recovery.

  • The sector also comprises various industries, from pharmaceuticals, biotech to healthcare facilities. 

AB's Approach to Healthcare Investing

Structural trends such as technological innovation may be stimulating change in healthcare today, but there's a vast distance from theory to practice, especially with nascent technologies. Bridging the gap will require business proof, more than scientific pizazz. 

At AB, we focus on global companies with strong business fundamentals. We do not try to predict scientific outcomes.

Some healthcare investors bet on whether a drug trial will be successful in the hope that, if it is, investors will pay more and the drug company’s stock price will rise. This is a flawed strategy, in our view. 

Even the scientists working on these trials, who may have devoted decades of their professional lives to these drugs, cannot predict the results. As investors, we do not have any more reliable insight into a drug’s likely effectiveness than the company. 

When we evaluate pharmaceutical companies, we invest in those that already have a profitable and proven product line-up as opposed to companies that the market thinks might have a promising future pipeline. 

Why AB International Health Care Portfolio?

Potential to grow your capital
  • The Portfolio offers investors durable long-term growth in the healthcare sector, or gain exposure to healthcare-related companies.


  • It aims to increase the value of your investment over time by selecting quality companies with competitive advantages over their peers and good growth potential. 
Stocks across multiple sub-sectors to balance portfolio risk
  • One of the easiest ways to gain exposure to a broad range of companies within the healthcare sector is to invest in stocks across a variety of sub-sectors.

  • The Portfolio allocates capital across various sub-sectors of the healthcare industry, such as pharmaceuticals, healthcare equipment, biotechnology and healthcare services. We believe this helps balance portfolio risk around a wider range of companies rather than a handful of stocks.
Benefit from the expertise of AB’s investment team
  • The Portfolio is managed by lead portfolio manager Vinay Thapar, supported by John Fogarty. With about 50 years of combined investment experience, they also draw on the collective insights of AB’s global healthcare sector analysts across various equity strategies.

  • This collective experience combined with our bottom-up research produce compelling investment ideas to help you capture the growth potential in the healthcare sector.

Portfolio Managers

Find Out More

AB International Health Care Portfolio Brochure

INVESTMENT RISKS TO CONSIDER These and other risks are described in the Portfolio’s prospectus.

Investment in the Portfolio entails certain risks. Investment returns and principal value of the Portfolio will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Some of the principal risks of investing in the Portfolio include:

Concentrated/Focus Risk: Investing a large portion of its assets in a limited number of industries, sectors or issuers, or within a limited geographical area, it can be riskier and subject to greater volatility than a Portfolio that invests more broadly.

Currency Risk: The Portfolio holds assets that are denominated in currencies other than its Base Currency, any changes in currency exchange rates could reduce investment gains or income, or increase investment losses, in some cases significantly. Hedging may reduce but not eliminate currency risk.

Derivatives Risk: The Portfolio is entitled to use derivative instruments for hedging and/or EPM purposes which may involve additional risks different from, and, in certain cases, greater than, the risks presented by more traditional investments.

Emerging/frontier Markets Risk: Where the Portfolio invests in emerging markets, these assets are generally smaller and more sensitive to economic and political factors and may be less easily traded, which could cause a loss to the Portfolio.

Equity Securities Risk: The value of equity investments may fluctuate in response to the activities and results of individual companies or because of market and economic conditions. These investments may decline over short- or long-term periods.

Important Information

The Portfolio is part of AB SICAV I (referred to as “AB”). AB is an open-ended investment company with variable capital (société d’investissement à capital variable) under the laws of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Prior to 5 February 2016, AB’s legal name was ACMBernstein SICAV, its trading name was AllianceBernstein.

On 31 August 2006 the Portfolio was formed by the merger of ACM International Health Care Fund into the current Portfolio. Performance prior to 31 August 2006 and noted “since inception” is actually ACM International Health Care Fund. The investment objective, policies and strategies of the portfolios are substantially the same. The fees and charges for the portfolios were calculated differently, however, their respective estimated total expense ratios are comparable.

Investment in the Fund entails certain risks. Investment returns and principal value of the Fund will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. The Fund is meant as a vehicle for diversification and does not represent a complete investment program. Some of the principal risks of investing in the Fund (risks typically associated with ordinary market conditions) include concentration/focus risk, currency risk, derivatives risk, emerging/frontier markets risk, equity securities risk, hedging risk, market risk, and securities lending risk. The Portfolio is entitled to use derivative instruments for hedging and/or EPM purposes which may involve additional risks different from, and, in certain cases, greater than, the risks presented by more traditional investments. These and other risks are described in the Fund’s prospectus. Prospective investors should read the prospectus and Product Highlights Sheet carefully and discuss risk and the fund’s fees and charges with their financial adviser to determine if the investment is appropriate for them.

This information is directed solely at persons in jurisdictions where the funds and relevant share class are registered or who may otherwise lawfully receive it. Before investing in AllianceBernstein funds, investors should review the fund’s full prospectus, together with the fund’s Product Highlights Sheet and the most recent financial statements. Copies of these documents, including the latest annual report and, if issued thereafter, the latest semi-annual report, may be obtained free of charge from www.abfunds.com/ www.alliancebernstein.com or by contacting the local distributor in the jurisdictions in which the funds are authorized for distribution.