B.E.S.T Sustainable Income Fund
The B.E.S.T Sustainable Income Fund aims to grow the value of your investment by investing primarily in shares of UK companies offering above-market levels of dividend income, whilst also considering potential growth in income and capital over the long term. It targets an income yield of at least 4% and combines both an income objective and an ethical approach. This latter approach caters for thoughtful investors who wish to incorporate Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues when making investment decisions. The fund takes into account a wide variety of criteria to determine the companies eligible for investment; the approach – and its name - is explained as follows:
B – Business and Financial
E – Environmental and Ecological
S – Social
T – Transparency and Governance
We believe that looking at all of these factors can give a better perspective on the likely sustainability of a company’s strategy and therefore its ability to deliver rewards for shareholders via dividends and/or capital growth. If a company shows scant regard for its stakeholders or its environment, there is a potentially greater risk that this will eventually result in a major problem that risks impairing capital permanently. By the same token, we expect that companies which are focused on these criteria as a matter of course have the potential to produce better returns in the long term.
The fund utilises a detailed screening system that assesses companies across a wide variety of environmental, social and governance factors whilst in addition to this comprehensive screen, we also apply our own exclusion criteria for sectors such as tobacco, armaments and pornography that we wish to avoid investing in. In addition, the fund was one of the first to exclude explicitly investment in the oil and gas production and mining sectors of the UK stock market, given the perceived risks associated with investing in fossil fuel extraction. As well as these exclusionary filters, the fund seeks to favour positive business practices by investing in companies that benefit the environment and society. We feel that this blend of positive and negative criteria is essential and allows us to capture the key concerns of investors.
Alongside the above, we take our role as shareholders very seriously and realise the importance of effective stewardship in encouraging good corporate practices. This means that we will exercise our voting rights wherever possible and seek to engage with companies to advocate suitable policies. We believe that good corporate governance at investee companies will be of long term benefit to the value of our investments.
In summary, the fund’s objective is the generation of sustainable income, both financially and operationally.
Important material to read before you apply: