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Where do investment companies fit into financial planning?

17 October 2019

AIC launches seminar series.

Despite the growth in investment company assets in recent years*, investment companies and investment trusts are often seen as belonging to a different world from financial planning. However, investment companies have many features that are relevant for many individual savers, for example the ability to produce smoother income streams and access to alternative assets.

To familiarise financial planners with investment trusts, the Association of Investment Companies (AIC) is running a series of three autumn training seminars, Investment trusts in financial planning.

The seminars, taking place in Cheshire (5 November), Guilford (27 November) and Bristol (28 November), are free and offer 2 hours 15 minutes of structured CPD. Full details of the events, which are open to financial advisers and other investment professionals, are available in the table below.

Hosted by the AIC’s Head of Intermediary Communications, Nick Britton, the seminars feature guest speakers including Jacqueline Lockie, Head of Financial Planning at the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI) and former Head of Training at the AIC.

Nick Britton, Head of Intermediary Communications at the Association of Investment Companies (AIC), said: “It’s not always obvious to financial planners how – or whether – investment trusts fit into the picture. We’ve designed these seminars not just to explain how  investment trusts work, but to focus on how they might be relevant to clients and fit into financial planners’ propositions and processes.

“This will include discussions around using investment companies on platforms and through discretionary fund managers (DFMs), as well as incorporating them into clients’ portfolios. With the FCA’s focus on product governance in mind, we’ll look at what sorts of clients investment companies may be suitable for, and how to compare their benefits and risks with open-ended funds.

“We hope the seminars will be useful to financial planners who do not currently use investment companies and may be interested in maintaining and improving their knowledge in this area.”

The seminars have the following learning objectives:

  • Understand the roles that investment companies can play in financial planning for clients with varying objectives and risk tolerance.
  • Explain the main features of investment companies that influence performance and client outcomes.
  • Identify the most important considerations when using investment companies on platforms.

AIC seminars: Investment trusts in financial planning





Guest speakers

Tuesday 5 November 2019

Cheshire (Knutsford)

Cottons Hotel and Spa, Manchester Road, Knutsford, Cheshire WA16 0SU

11:30 – 14:30 

Jacqueline Lockie, CISI

Nick Greenwood, Miton Global Opportunities

Genevra Banszky von Ambroz, Smith & Williamson

Mike Barrett, the lang cat

Wednesday 27 November 2019


Holiday Inn Guildford, Egerton Road, Guildford, Surrey GU2 7XZ

11:30 – 14:30 

Jacqueline Lockie, CISI

James Henderson, Henderson Opportunities Trust, Law Debenture Corporation, Lowland Investment Company

James Burns, Smith & Williamson

Mike Barrett, the lang cat

Thursday 28 November 2019


De Vere Tortworth Court, Tortworth, Wotton-under-Edge, GL12 8HH

11:30 – 14:30

Jacqueline Lockie, CISI

Marcus Phayre-Mudge, TR Property Investment Trust

James Burns, Smith & Williamson

Mike Barrett, the lang cat


The seminars follow the release last week of research by the lang cat, commissioned by the AIC, in which financial advisers discuss how they use investment companies. Mike Barrett, Consulting Director at the lang cat, will speak at each of the three seminars to cover the research in more depth as well as explore some of the issues around using investment companies on platforms.

To book, please use the online booking form on the financial adviser section of the AIC’s website,, or see a full programme for each of the seminars.


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  1. Investment company assets stood at £198bn at the end of September 2019, an increase of 69% compared to the end of September 2014 (£117bn).
  2. The Association of Investment Companies (AIC) was founded in 1932 to represent the interests of the investment trust industry – the oldest form of collective investment.  Today, the AIC represents a broad range of closed-ended investment companies, incorporating investment trusts and other closed-ended investment companies and VCTs. The AIC’s members believe that the industry is best served if it is united and speaks with one voice. The AIC’s mission statement is to help members add value for shareholders over the longer term. The AIC has 362 members and the industry has total assets of approximately £198 billion.
  3. Disclaimer: The information contained in this press release does not constitute investment advice or personal recommendation and it is not an invitation or inducement to engage in investment activity. You should seek independent financial and, if appropriate, legal advice as to the suitability of any investment decision. Past performance is not a guide to future performance.  The value of investment company shares, and the income from them, can fall as well as rise.  You may not get back the full amount invested and, in some cases, nothing at all.
  4. To stop receiving AIC press releases, please contact the communications team.


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