View more on these topics

Noble shows spirit of adventure

Noble & Company

UniVen VCT

Type: Venture capital trust

Aim: Growth by investing in spin-out companies from UK universities and other early stage intellectual property-based companies

Minimum investment: Lump sum 2,000

Closing date: April 4, 2005 for 2004/2005 tax year, June 30, 2005 for 2005/2006 tax year

Charges: Initial up to 5.5%, annual up to 3.5%

Commission: Initial 3% or initial 2.25% plus renewal 0.375%

Tel: 020 7763 2200

The UniVen VCT is a venture capital trust that invests in university spin-out companies and other early stage intellectual property based companies in the technology sector.

Michael Philips proprietor Michael Both feels this VCT has the true spirit of adventure. He says: “It has the facility for the reinvestment of dividends for investors who are purely interested in capital growth. The low minimum investment of 2,000 makes it easier for a typical investor to diversify his VCT budget.”

Both likes the fact that the directors appear to have very relevant experience in the fields in which the company will be investing. He says: “As a pure technology trust being launched after the technology bubble has fully deflated, shareholders can hope that the managers will have the pick of investments on favourable terms.”

Turning his attention to the potential drawbacks of the VCT Both says: “Considering the years of experience of Top Technology, the frontline managers of the VCT, the stated internal rate of return on a capital employed basis for past ventures is good, but not outstanding.”

He also thinks there are a lot of layers of management fees for such a small company, which he fears is more likely to dilute the return to the shareholders than enhance it. However, in fairness to UniVen, he concedes that this is not an unusual situation.”

He says: “As with all VCTs the managers need an incentive. At 20 per cent of any excess above dividends of 7p per share after four years, what concerns me is that there is no concomitant requirement for the net asset value to be at least 100p. This potentially leaves shareholders capital dangerously exposed, especially since the value of holdings can fluctuate wildly.”


Suitability to market: Good
Investment strategy: Good
Charges: Poor
Adviser remuneration: Average

Overall 6/10


Stewart Ritchie on pensions

There is one particular area of transition to the new pension regime which may be complex for large numbers of ordinary people – the protection of tax-free cash.

Five by five

BRISTOL & WEST MORTGAGES5.05% Five Year FixedType: Fixed-rate mortgageFixed term: Until March 31, 2010Fixed rate: 5.05%Minimum loan: £15,001Maximum loan: Up to 95% of valuation to a maximum of £150,000, up to 90% to £450,000, up to 75%of valuation subject to a maximum of £1mIncome multiples: Up to four times principal income plus second or 2.75 […]

Sure bet

Making the most of a freebie award: Goes to freelance journalist Jenne Mannion who scooped winnings of 200 a time at consecutive junkets to Windsor Park races. At the Cazenove event, she backed winners in five of the six races.

The savvy consumer

In last year’s FCA thematic review of the mortgage market, one of the key things highlighted was the “savvy consumer”. That’s the client who comes in the door with a very clear idea of what they need and expect you to get them it. They don’t think they need advice, they have after all consulted […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm