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New research reveals that advisers prefer EIS to VCT

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A new survey by tax efficient investment manager suggests that financial advisers utilise Enterprise Investment Scheme (“EIS”) investment opportunities more than Venture Capital Trusts (“VCTs”) .

When asked whether they tend to use EIS funds or VCTs more often, one in ten suggested they only use EIS. This is compared to just 2% of respondents who use VCTs exclusively.

Nearly a third use both EIS and VCT equally, with a further 26% stating that they use EIS ‘predominantly,’ but do also utilise VCTs when appropriate.

82% of advisers also state that speed of deployment is a ‘very important’ factor when selecting an EIS manager, with the other 18% suggesting that this be a ‘fairly important’ criterion.

The EIS is a Government scheme that provides a range of tax reliefs for investors who subscribe for qualifying shares in qualifying companies, including income tax relief, capital gains tax deferral, CGT-free growth, inheritance tax mitigation and share loss relief.

VCTs are similar to investment trusts and are managed by fund managers, with investors subscribing for shares in a VCT, which then onward invests in qualifying trading companies, with tax reliefs including income tax relief, CGT-free growth and tax free dividends.

Andrew Aldridge, Partner at Deepbridge Capital and Board Member of The Enterprise Investment Scheme Association (EISA), commented: “Given last year’s record fundraising by VCTs, you would be forgiven for thinking that they are the primary tax efficient investment planning tool used by financial advisers, but this survey suggests otherwise.

“It is reassuring to know that the Enterprise Investment Scheme continues to be a key tool for advisers when tax planning and seeking long-term growth opportunities. Given the current macroeconomic climate, EIS has never been more important for investors, advisers and, critically, the growth-focused early-stage companies for whom EIS funding is invaluable.”

Kam Pooni, CEO at Glyconics, which has received EIS funding added; “The Enterprise Investment Scheme is globally envied, and provides UK based innovators with vital funding that can be transformational. This has been the case for us at Glyconics as we seek to revolutionise the medical diagnostics and biomarker analysis industries, by taking our impressive R&D results into the commercial arena.”

Michael White, Managing Director at Capital Wealth Partners, concluded; “Both EIS and VCTs provide financial advisers with fantastic tax planning tools, whilst also encouraging investors to back early-stage unlisted stocks, which could provide significant long-term growth. Within a diversified and balanced portfolio, all financial advisers should be considering EIS investments for appropriate clients.”

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