Ethical Performance
inside intelligence for responsible business


ethical VCT is first into the UK market

October 1999

The UK’s first ‘ethical’ venture capital trust (VCT) is being launched in early October.

The Pennine Downing Ethical VCT will invest up to £10 million, primarily in a mix of smaller unquoted and quoted companies.

Unquoted companies will comprise 40 per cent of the investments, with another 40 per cent put into companies listed on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) and 20 per cent in fixed income and listed securities.

The VCT will invest in ‘companies which make a positive contribution to society’, such as renewable energy and clean technology firms, but not in companies involved in areas such as animal exploitation and armaments. An ethical committee will help to evaluate companies.

The VCT is a joint venture between venture capital specialist Downing Corporate Finance and stockbrokers Rathbone Neilson Cobbold. Rathbone has a range of VCTs investing in AIM companies and a well respected ethical fund management and research team.

Most interest is likely from private individuals, for whom a VCT can offer tax benefits.

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