Baillie Gifford Positive Change fund

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Combatting inequality

The fund looks for companies who are diffusing skills and knowledge through social and educational inclusion to help combat inequality

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Helping those in poverty

Portfolio also offers the chance for investors to be exposed to companies that are addressing the needs of people at the bottom of the global income ladder

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Future trend exposure

Exposed to some of the secular trends of the future, including electrification and semi-conductors

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Leading performance

One of the leading funds in the IA Global sector posting consistent top-end performance

The Fund

One of the fund’s overarching objectives is ‘to contribute towards a more sustainable and inclusive world’. This fund is organised into four themes:

  • Social Inclusion & Education
  • Environment & Resource Needs
  • Healthcare & Quality of Life, and
  • Base of the Pyramid (people at the bottom of the wealth ladder)

The fund employs a relatively open framework upon which investments are selected; focusing at an individual company level and allowing curiosity and enthusiasm to drive the research agenda. Sharing common objectives with their investment colleagues by seeking high-quality growth companies, the fund is able to leverage the resources of the wider investment department, including regional and global specialists.

Whilst this fund invests in companies relevant to Equality & Diversity, please be aware the managers also invest across other responsible themes.

Social Inclusion and Education

One of the main investment themes running through the portfolio is Social Inclusion & Education, where the focus is placed on preventing the polarization of societies and inequality. It’s estimated that the top 1% own almost half of all global wealth (47%), the top 10% own 85% and the bottom 50% own less than 1%. The fund assumes this to be a result of the inequality of inputs such as education. The lack of access to quality education restricts living standards and also makes it easier for citizens to be manipulated. The fund looks to invest in companies effectively combatting these issues through means such as innovative educational applications.

Base of the Pyramid

Another key theme running through the portfolio is what they call the ‘Base of the Pyramid’. This theme essentially involves the challenges facing the least fortunate in society. Some of the main challenges associated with this theme include poor educational structures and limited financial inclusion, which can restrict economic potential within certain regions. It is estimated that over half of the world’s population is trapped in poverty and live on an income of less than $3000 per year. Therefore, improving the living standards and future prospects of those people is vital to a prosperous and inclusive world.

Example holdings

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What they do
Bank Rakyat Provides saving, lending, insurance and payment services in Indonesia. It is the largest provider in the country, where half of adults in the region do not have access to formal financial services.
Alphabet Revolves around the accessibility of information. One of their aims is to extend internet connectivity to those living in remote communities.
FDM Provides training and job opportunities for graduates, ex-forces personnel and people returning to the workplace, with a view to promoting social mobility.