Godfrey launches funding drive for social impact trust

By Sam Shaw

Added 24th October 2016

Daniel Godfrey, former head of the Investment Association is set to launch The People’s Trust, an investment trust with a vested interest in social impact.

Godfrey launches funding drive for social impact trust

Looking to raise £100,000 when it lists on the London Stock Exchange in the first half of 2017, The People’s Trust is currently seeking £20 from founder members – £10 if under 35 – to deliver against its objectives of eradicating the bonus culture in financial services.

“The People’s Trust is aiming to make investment work better for everyone. It will be dedicated to the interests of its customers, to the long-term future of the companies it will invest in and to its impact on the economy and society,” Godfrey said.

Willis Towers Watson has been appointed to engage in fund manager selection. While First State Investments, Orbis Investments and Big Issue Invest are already supporting The People’s Trust in its infancy.

City law firm Freshfields are acting as legal adviser to the initiative and will advise through to the successful launch of The People’s Trust.

This initiative is purely intended to raise funding for the development costs of The People’s Trust. It is not an offer to subscribe for shares. The prospectus is anticipated in the first half of 2017.

The People’s Trust intends to deliver long-term returns to customers while seeking to improve corporate behaviour.

The trust will take a high-conviction, low-turnover investment approach with investment returns measured over seven-year perioids.

Godfrey added: “There’s also an allocation of the fund to social impact investment - this isn’t charity but the money is very tangibly being used for good.”

The portfolio will be managed by between five and 10 managers at launch.

The trust will pay no bonuses to its executives, rather paying them partly in shares that must be held at least seven years, creating a complete alignment of interests and will allocate 1% of assets towards Social Impact Investment.

He said: “There is need for improvement in the investment industry, particularly around how customers are treated and how money is managed. Most people think investing isn’t for them – we’re aiming to change that.

“Costs and charges could be much simpler and more transparent, making customers better informed. Short-term pressures and incentives could be replaced with longer-term thinking and investing, creating more growth. As well as giving investors more, better investment practices like these would have a positive impact on society – generating not just better returns, but a better future for everyone.”

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