The winners of the Association of Investment Companies (AIC) Shareholder Communication Awards were announced last night at the AIC’s Annual London Dinner at The Savoy. The awards recognise exceptional shareholder communication by AIC member investment companies and their managers.
The awards were presented by the chairman of the judging panel, Charles Cade, Head of Investment Companies Research at Numis Securities. The judging panel also included Tim Cockerill, Investment Director at Rowan Dartington, Moira O’Neill, Head of Personal Finance at Interactive Investor, Emma Sexton, Founder and CEO of MYWW and David Stevenson, freelance financial journalist and commentator.
Chairman of the judging panel, Charles Cade, Head of Investment Companies Research at Numis Securities said: “2018 was another very strong year for entries. The panel was particularly impressed by the increasingly high-standard of reports and accounts. This was especially true in the alternative category whose reports and accounts are now some of the best in the industry. We were also very impressed with the increasing number of high-quality investment company websites. More and more companies and management groups are bringing creativity and imagination to how they offer information on their websites and this was great to see. I would like to congratulate the winners and thank all of the entrants.”
Ian Sayers, Chief Executive of the Association of Investment Companies said: “The AIC Shareholder Communication Awards recognise the very best communicators in the investment company industry. Today, more and more information is available to investors than ever before which makes effective communication even more important. These awards celebrate those who are providing clear, meaningful information to shareholders in an imaginative way. Congratulations to all the winners who set an example for the industry.”
The awards categories were Best Report and Accounts – Generalist, Best Report and Accounts – Specialist, Best Report and Accounts – Alternative, Best Factsheet, Best PR Campaign, Best Marketing Campaign, Best Website – Individual Investment Company, Best Website – Fund Management Group and a new category, The Online Innovation Award.
The winners were:
Best Report and Accounts – Generalist
Winner: F&C Investment Trust
The judges praised the winner for successfully conveying the personality of the investment company, for its intuitive and engaging layout which drew the reader in and its appeal to a broad range of people.
Best Report and Accounts – Specialist
Winner: Allianz Technology Trust
The winning entry made excellent use of pictures, used text and design in a creative way and the judges described the report and accounts’ ‘Insights’ section, explaining the technology sectors it invests in, as “simply superb”.
Commended: Herald Investment Trust
Best Report and Accounts – Alternative
Winner: HarbourVest Global Private Equity
The panel felt this report and accounts explained the company’s structure and portfolio in an extremely clear way and praised its unusual but highly effective document size.
Winner: Alliance Trust
The winning factsheet was bright and engaging, and its great use of colour, thoughtful layout and choice of data made it extremely easy to use.
Best PR Campaign
Winner: The Scottish Investment Trust
The judges felt it had communicated the company’s investment style very effectively and its ‘ugly ducklings’ message was one that appealed to audiences, as evidenced by the amount of media coverage the campaign had received.
Best Marketing Campaign
Winner: Janus Henderson Investors for www.stepstoinvesting.com
The panel praised the winner for being bold, well-executed and for doing something different. The site was educational and engaging and the judges felt it was a contemporary approach to marketing.
Best Website – Individual Investment Company
Winner: Alliance Trust for www.alliancetrust.co.uk
The judges said the winner combined beautiful design with excellent price and performance information to create a website which made you want to explore it more and more.
Best Website – Fund Management Group
Winner: Martin Currie Investment Management for:
The winning management group skilfully maintained a clean and elegant design across their website whilst still giving each investment company its own distinct character. The judges said the site was easy to use and cleverly designed with information and documents only a few clicks away.
The Online Innovation Award
Winner: Baillie Gifford for Trust magazine
The panel felt Trust combined beautiful design, illustration and thought-leadership into an online magazine which was unlike anything they had seen before.
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- 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 348 members and the industry has total assets of approximately £178 billion.
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