“Why don’t we get any good snow around here?” That question was recently asked by one of Steve Scruggs’s four daughters. Scruggs, a CFA® is portfolio manager for the Queens Road Small Cap Value Fund and the Queens Road Value Fund. Although Charlotte, North Carolina, where Queens Road is headquartered, does not get much snow, like any determined investor, Steve “dug in” to try to solve the problem. After some trial and error, Steve converted an old pressure washer and an air compressor into a homemade snow-making machine. A few days later there were piles of fresh snow and a line of kids in the yard waiting to go sledding.

That kind of curiosity about how things work combined with old-fashioned resourcefulness helps to make Scruggs a good investor. The Queens Road Small Value fund has outperformed its benchmark, the Russell 2000 Value Index, over the past 10 years and since inception in 2002, earning an annualized return of 9.59% vs. 8.38% for the Russell 2000 Value Index (as of 9/30/16). Scruggs has served as portfolio manager, using the same value process for that entire 14-year period.

I spoke with Steve on December 4.

You have two funds, the Queens Road Small Cap Value Fund (QRSVX) and the Queens Road Value Fund (QRVLX). Both have been around since June 2002. What is your background and that of your investment team? What led you to create these funds?

The Queens Road Funds are managed by Bragg Financial, our family owned and run investment firm in Charlotte, NC. We were started over 50 years ago and we manage $1.2 billion for private clients and institutions. By the 1990’s, we had a good investment philosophy and an established investment committee and were picking stocks for clients. We were doing a good job, so in 2002, we decided to launch the mutual funds to continue growing our firm.

I have been the portfolio manager since inception almost 15 years ago and I am supported by our investment committee. Benton Bragg and Matt DeVries are analysts on the Queens Road Small Value fund and all of us are CFA’s. Benton and I went to high school together in Charlotte and we both went to business school at Wake Forest. He is also the chair of our investment committee and is an analyst on the Queens Road Value fund along with Ben Rose.