New Barclays fund to make impact investing more accessible

Barclays bank has this month launched a new impact investing fund, which offers retail and institutional investors the opportunity to generate long-term capital growth, whilst also making a positive impact on social and environmental issues.

The Multi-Impact Growth Fund has been launched with seed funding from Big Society Capital and in response to growing demand for investment opportunities that consider societal effects without compromising on seeking market-rate financial returns.

Research conducted by Barclays found that 56% of investors are interested in this type of product, but that only 9% have already made an investment in a fund of this kind.

Damian Payiatakis, head of the impact investing business at Barclays, said: “We see the growing trend of impact investing being driven by many factors, including a demand from investors who are socially and environmentally conscious and want their investments to reflect their attitudes.

“Our objective, therefore, has been to develop a new and innovative approach that will make impact investing accessible for those looking into these products for the first time.

“The launch of this precedent-setting Fund also demonstrates Barclays’ commitment to building its impact investing business and providing financial solutions for global challenges.”

The Multi-Impact Growth Fund primarily invests in specialist third-party funds, which have been identified and blended by Barclays. They have been selected because of their potential for strong financial returns and their positive impact on key social and environmental issues, such as climate or demographic changes.

We are very excited by this proposition because of the potential to scale and replicate this fund.

The fund offers investors a diversified portfolio across equities, bonds, and geographies. It is a UCITS vehicle, meaning it gives retail investors simple and single-access means of impact investing through a variety of direct and tax efficient means, such as ISAs. According to Barclays, there is no minimum investment size.

Sir Harvey McGrath, chair of Big Society Capital, which is an independent wholesale social investor, said: “At Big Society Capital, we are very encouraged to see a leading multinational bank and financial institution such as Barclays launch their own impact investment product.

“We are very excited by this proposition because of the potential to scale and replicate this fund. The £5m investment from our treasury portfolio demonstrates our belief in Barclays’ ability to bring impact investment to individual investors, enabling them to create a positive impact on people and planet using their personal investments.”

The fund is the first part of Barclays’ wider impact investing proposition, currently in development.

To find out more about the Multi-Impact Growth Fund, click here.  


Photo credit: Les Haines