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A blank canvas for EIS investments

Albert Goodwin is an enterprise investment scheme aiming to raise up to £4.95m to finance a London-based art dealing business.

The business will be run in conjunction with an existing business, the Chris Beetles Gallery. Chris Beetles has been trading for 22 years and deals in a range of art from affordable illustrations and cartoons to Victorian and 20th Century oil paintings.

According to Chris Beetles, there is a demand for art within the £5,000 to £100,000 price range but the gallery has an inadequate supply of suitable pieces. Albert Goodwin has been set up to focus purely on the higher end of the market and will have first refusal on any works the Chris Beetles Gallery has above £5,000.

For example, Albert Goodwin will sell the sculptures of Anna Mahler, the daughter of the composer Gustav Mahler, as a result of its agreement with Chris Beetles.

Albert Goodwin will operate from the same premises as Chris Beetles. It will not be charged for office, gallery or administrative services, which will reduce start-up and running costs, allowing more of investors&#39 money to be used to buy art.

Albert Goodwin will be charged a discounted rate by Chris Beetles for services such as transportation, cleaning, restoration, mounting, framing, photography and advertising.

Insurance, audit and legal costs will be met by Albert Goodwin under a management agreement that pays Chris Beetles 50 per cent of the profits as a fee.

David Porter, an adviser at IFA firm BestInvest, says Albert Goodwin&#39s reduced overheads lower the risk for investors. However, the management fee paid to Chris Beetles limits investors&#39 share of any profits and, because art is a speculative market, this EIS is still high-risk.

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