Our unique approach to responsible investment gives clients assurance that their investments are managed in line with their ethical standards, and that Epworth can be held accountable to the principles we outline in our pillars.
We also recognise there are times when our clients could benefit from specialist expertise that goes beyond our inhouse offering. This may be, for example, geographical specialisations; sector specialisations; absolute return strategies; venture capital and other early-stage enterprises; and private equity.
Pooled funds represent the most effective way to access this external expertise. Pooled investment funds, or collective investment schemes, are assets of multiple beneficial owners aggregated into single investment vehicles.
Such funds provide access to specific asset classes, thematic investments or strategies that could not otherwise be accessed cost effectively or in the appropriate size without a heightened risk of liquidity becoming unbalanced.
Examples of pooled funds include open-ended structures, closed ended structures and partnerships that can be regulated or unregulated. Epworth’s own funds are open ended unit trusts, that are structured as Charity Authorised Investment Funds. The “platforming” of Epworth’s portfolio clients has increased the range of potential asset classes using pooled funds. These include Alternative assets, Infrastructure, Property, Private Equity, and Venture Capital. Exchange Traded Funds are another vehicle commonly used in Epworth’s Funds.
When Epworth invests through pooled investment funds there may be indirect exposure to business activities and companies that would otherwise be excluded on ethical grounds. This is comparable with an investment in a large, diversified company, which may not merit exclusion on ethical grounds but which, nonetheless, may have some exposure to activities which would result in an exclusion if they were the sole activity of the company.
If Epworth utilises pooled funds, the following preferences will be considered: