The revaluation of risk premiums we saw in February escalated in March, leading to a further decline in the world's stock markets and a sharp rise in the US dollar. Central bank efforts in combination with large rescue packages from all directions helped to calm the markets, which led to the stock markets recovering significantly. Shares have largely been sold across the board, which also affected the Global Security Fund, which declined by 12.9 percent.
Given the situation, we have increased the frequency of our communication with more detailed information, in addition to the monthly reports. The material is available on the website in the news archives. There is also a video conference presentation with pictures where we talk about our view on why we think the investment situation will benefit the price development of the companies that are included in the fund. Later this week we will publish a more comprehensive report on this.
The fund has become more concentrated and we have reduced its holding from 27 to 22 companies. Our exposure to the US dollar has increased to over 90 percent as we believe a significantly stronger dollar exchange rate this year. So far this year, we have seen that the risk premiums for growth companies have increased relative to the value of so-called value shares. This has benefited the more technology-oriented companies in the portfolio and also niche IT consulting companies such as Mantech and Booz Allen, who work closely with government customers with security solutions.
During market turmoil, sometimes good investment opportunities are found and we took the opportunity to buy ourselves into CrowdStrike for $ 32. CrowdStrike is a cyber security company that has been on the radar for a long time but did not buy when we felt the price was too high relative to other companies. The company was listed on the stock exchange last year for $ 34 and was traded at a price of $ 100 in a short time. With high double-digit sales growth driven by, among other things, world-leading products, we believe the company will reach annual sales of $ 1bn by 2023. The company is now one of the five largest holdings in the funds and although we expect an increased level of volatility in the market, we believe this is one of the companies that will benefit after this crisis. Five days after the purchase, the company was traded at over $ 57. We have also taken the opportunity to increase our holding in Microsoft.
Many of the traditional security companies were down sharply in March, in line with the other stock exchanges. We feel confident in owning these companies because they work directly with states as customers, which means they will not be affected in the short term by this crisis, unlike companies focused on individuals and companies. Most of the fund's holdings have signed contracts that have secured more than twice the annual sales, which provides a fantastic short-term buffer. The world has been largely unprepared for this crisis and as a result we believe that security will be highlighted as one of the most important focus areas going forward. We believe the sharp investment trend that existed before the crisis will increase in pace. Being able to buy companies such as Lockheed Martin now to a PE number of 13 will in retrospect be considered cheap. The fact that the fund has many such examples of companies makes us feel confident that we have good conditions to navigate through the storm.
You can download the report here