Octopus Investments, part of Octopus Group and the UK’s largest Venture Capital Trust (VCT) manager, has announced that its AIM VCTs have closed after raising £40 million in just 24 days.
This makes it the fastest fundraise for the Octopus AIM VCTs in terms of the rate of inflows, averaging more than £1.6 million each day since it opened.
An initial target of £30 million was set when fundraising opened on 19th August. The offer was then extended to £40 million due to the high level of investor demand, which closed on 13th September after reaching the new target.
The VCTs offer investors access to a wide range of AIM listed growth companies across a diverse range of sectors, including pharmaceuticals, biotech, healthcare services, software development and clean energy tech. The portfolios are made up of around 90 companies, more than half of which have been held for over five years.
The two AIM VCTs have performed strongly over the past year, delivering a total return of 41.7% and 42.1% and both VCTs have recently declared special dividends in the period.
Jessica Franks, Head of Retail Investment Products, commented on the record fundraise:
“The performance of the AIM VCTs has been particularly strong over the past 12 months and increasing numbers of investors now recognise the significant long-term growth potential of smaller companies.
“Early indications also suggest that that VCT demand is very high across the market this year. This is being partly driven by the usual factors of tightening of pension contributions and concerns over the lifetime allowance. However, we’re also hearing that some people have built up larger savings over the past 12 months due to fewer holidays or other expenses. VCTs offer an attractive solution for those looking to invest their additional savings tax efficiently while still accessing growth.
“This all means that advisers and investors will need to act quickly to ensure access to the best VCTs. If you wait until March, they might all be gone.”