History

The British Empire Trust plc (“British Empire”) was established in 1889 in order to generate profits for its shareholders by investing in the shares of other companies. In 1985, Asset Value Investors (“AVI”) were appointed as investment managers of British Empire, which at that point held a total of £6 million in assets under management. As at 30 April 2016, total assets under management of British Empire stand at over £776 million.

British Empire Trust 125 Years Book

British Empire Trust 125 Years Book

(hard copies available upon request to UK addresses only)

  • 1889
    British Empire Trust plc. established.
  • 1984
    Asset Value Investors Ltd. (Formerly Laurwood, clan and ISAM) became the investment manager.
  • 1985
    4 for 1 rights issue increases size from £6 million to £30 million.
  • 1986
    Successful acquisition of Ashdown Investment Trust for a consideration of c. £66 million.
  • 2001
    Company exceeds the MSCI World Index by 20 percentage points.
  • 2005
    The Company’s NAV (Net asset value) exceeds the MSCI World Index for a seventh consecutive year, by 26 percentage points on a total return basis.
  • 2007
    NAV per Share reaches 517.8p. The Company’s positive performance continues, 5.9 percentage points above the MSCI World Index on a total return basis.
  • 2008
    NAV per Share reaches 521.1p, a record level, before market turmoil causes it to fall.
  • 2009
    A volatile year in which NAV total return per share fell over 10% in the first half of the fiscal year, then gained over 31% in the second half, resulting in a 17.8% total NAV return over the year.
  • 2012
    A difficult year for the investment community in which NAV total return per share grew by 10.3% compared with an increase of 13.8% in the Morningstar Global Growth Index.
  • 2014
    A year of progress with total NAV return being 6.8% vs the MSCI All Country World Ex USA at 5.1% and in which the trust’s discount reduced from 11.8% to 10.3%.
  • 2015
    The second half of the Company’s financial year has been marked by intense volatility across equity markets around the world.  Having returned 7.2% during the first half of the year, the NAV total return in the second half of the year was -14.5%, making the total return for the full year -8.3%.  The Company’s formal benchmark (MSCI All Country World ex-US) returned -5.6% over the full year.