Aberdeen Standard partners with Big Issue Invest to launch UK Equity Impact

The global investment manager will launch the UK fund in collaboration with the social investment arm of The Big Issue

Aberdeen Standard has partnered with Big Issue Invest to launch UK Equity Impact. The global investment manager will launch the Employment Opportunities Fund in collaboration with the social investment arm of The Big Issue. The fund will be managed by Lesley Duncan, investment director, Aberdeen Standard Investments.

The aim of the fund is to generate a financial return over the long term by investing in companies with more than 50 per cent of their employees in the UK and with the potential to grow and sustain long-term financial returns while promoting and implementing sustainable employment opportunities and practices. Duncan said that 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 inequalities in the UK. Good employment is fundamental to all aspects of personal and social wellbeing. The Fund offers investors a clearly defined means of investing in companies demonstrating best practice within human capital management, while seeking to deliver a competitive financial return over the longer term.

The Fund will be actively managed, allowing analysts and the manager to engage with the companies and assessing their ability to deliver financial returns as well as ensuring their ability to ensure good employment opportunities and practices.

Big Issue Invest has commissioned The Good Economy Partnership, a social advisory and data analytics firm specialising in measuring social impacts, to help assess the impact of such companies. Along with good employment opportunities, the Fund manager will also take note of companies whose activities, products and services may not be deemed to be aligned to United Nations Sustainable Development Goals when investing.

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