Investment Week is pleased to congratulate the winners of the 22nd Investment Company of the Year Awards, in association with the Association of Investment Companies.
The winners, see below, were announced during a virtual awards ceremony on 19 November and you can watch the show again on demand above.
The awards have a proud history of rewarding excellence in closed-ended fund management, highlighting outstanding managers who have delivered consistently strong performance for investors and the judges believe can continue to perform well in the future.
The shortlists for the awards are constructed using scores provided by the AIC, using Morningstar data. Our methodology can be found by clicking here.
Winners were then chosen by our judging panel after heated debate during our judging sessions, where qualitative factors were also considered.
The judging panel for the awards includes some of the UK's leading researchers and investors in investment companies and can be viewed here.
Covid-19 has brought significant challenges in 2020 and how investment companies have weathered the storms this year using all the tools at their disposal was a key consideration for our judges.
However, it is important we also look to the future too. The theme of this year's event is 'Unlocking a wealth of opportunities in a changed world' and the awards this year are a chance to honour managers giving investors access to some of the world's most exciting companies in a supportive structure, while areas like ESG analysis have taken on a fresh importance.
Our Group of the Year accolade this year went to Baillie Gifford, with the company winning a number of categories at this year's event. The judges said this group has been leading the charge in terms of low fees and best in class structures.
They said this is their year and they have really captured the retail imagination, winning mandates and issuing new products.
First Rising Star of the Year Award
Investment Week was also pleased to award the first ever Rising Star of the Year accolade to Claire Dwyer (right), associate director, investment trusts at Fidelity International as part of our work to encourage new talent in the industry.
The judges said she is a passionate advocate of the investment company structure and has made strides in engaging traditionally underrepresented groups such as female and younger investors.
In particular, she contributed a well-received chapter on the 'next generation' of investors to the 'Investment Trusts Handbook 2019' and is regularly quoted in the media and at events on issues concerning investment trusts.
Finally, the newly renamed Jackie Beard Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Industry was awarded to Schroders' Matthew Dobbs (right).
The judges wanted to give this special award this year to a manager who has been an enthusiast for the investment trust sector for over two decades during an investment career spanning four decades, adding he is always an enjoyable and interesting person to meet.
They commended him for doing a really good job as a steward of the capital in the Asia trusts he runs over the long term, and said he is committed to ensuring they succeed in the future as he prepares for retirement next year.
The winners in full
UK All Companies
Winner: The Mercantile Investment Trust
Highly commended: Baillie Gifford UK Growth Fund
Winner: Finsbury Growth & Income Trust
Highly commended: Murray Income Trust
UK Smaller Companies
Winner: JPMorgan Smaller Companies Investment Trust
Highly commended: BlackRock Throgmorton Trust
Winner: Pacific Horizon Investment Trust
Winner: BlackRock Greater Europe Investment Trust
Winner: Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust
Highly commended: The Monks Investment Trust
Winner: Scottish American Investment Company
Overseas Smaller Companies
Winner: Edinburgh Worldwide Investment Trust
Highly commended: Montanaro European Smaller Companies Trust
Winner: JPMorgan Emerging Markets Investment Trust
Winner: BMO Managed Portfolio Growth
Winner: JPMorgan China Growth & Income
Private Equity and Growth Capital
Winner: HgCapital Trust
Winner: BioPharma Credit
Winner: LXI REIT
Biotech & Healthcare and Technology
Winner: Allianz Technology
Highly commended: The Biotech Growth Trust
Commodities and Natural Resources
Winner: Baker Steel Resources Trust
Hedge Funds and Financials
Winner: BH Macro
Winner: BBGI Global Infrastructure
Highly commended: 3i Infrastructure
Environmental and Renewables
Winners: Impax Environmental Markets and Renewables Infrastructure
Winner: Albion Development VCT
Highly commended: Pembroke VCT
Winner: Amati AIM VCT
Best New Issue
Winner: Octopus Renewables Infrastructure Trust
Group of the Year
Winner: Baillie Gifford
Rising Star of the Year
Winner: Claire Dwyer, Fidelity International
Jackie Beard Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Industry
Winner: Matthew Dobbs, Schroders