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Aberdeen launches fund with The Big Issue

6 February 2018

Aberdeen Standard Investments has teamed up with Big Issue Invest, the social investment arm of The Big Issue, to launch the UK Equity Impact- Employment Opportunities Fund.

The aim of the fund, managed by investment director Lesley Duncan, will be to generate a financial return over the long-term by investing in companies which promote and implement good employment opportunities and practices.

A percentage of the fund’s management fee will go to The Big Issue Group, and data analytics firm The Good Economy Partnership has been commissioned by Big Issue Invest to help develop the impact assessment framework.

Aberdeen Standard Investments said companies will be chosen for their potential to grow and sustain strong long-term financial returns and will have more than 50% of their employees in the UK. Companies will also be assessed on their training and employment opportunities for young people, as well as their wage rates and location.

Duncan said: “The strategy of the UK Equity Impact – Employment Opportunities Fund is designed to meet the dual objectives of strong financial returns, while supporting good employment opportunities and practices. By investing in quoted UK companies the Fund seeks to harness equity-market returns while also helping to direct significant capital in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goal 8 – full and productive employment.

“A special job assessment framework underpins the investment process, guiding portfolio selection and helping the Fund meet its impact objectives, thereby helping to address the inequalities in the UK.”

Nigel Kershaw, chair of The Big Issue Group, commented: “The collaboration with Aberdeen Standard Investments will help Big Issue Invest advance its mission to dismantle poverty and create opportunity for people and communities across the UK. A percentage of the Fund’s management fee will go to The Big Issue Group, enabling the organisation to deliver this mission by continuing to finance social enterprises and charities offering business solutions to social problems.”

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