2020 has been a momentous year. As the people of the world were trying to stay at home to halt the spread of a deadly virus, many aspects of life moved at lightening pace. As the Save & Invest team heads off for the Christmas break I thought it was worth looking at a few of the companies we have accessed through our portfolios and how these investments are not just making returns for our investors but are making an impact on lives across the globe.
The AstraZeneca collaboration with Oxford University has made headlines around the world and brings hope of an affordable Covid 19 vaccine programme to countries across the globe. They have also created their bioventure hub which gives access to their expertise and infrastructure for emerging life science companies. This major pharmaceutical company is held in several of the funds we use in our portfolios.
A small name for a big impact business. Ecolab develops, produces and distributes cleaning products and water treatment solutions, which saves water, reuses waste and creates healthier environments. The company started with the founder and one employee in 1923, making a carpet cleaning product and now employs over 50,000 making the world cleaner, safer and healthier. Both Baillie Gifford and Liontrust are investors in this sustainable business.
Founded in Stockholm in 2016, it raised $12m with the mission to build the world's greenest batteries and enable the European transition to renewable energy. Teaming up with Gothenburg's Chalmers University, founded by a Scot, they have industrialised the recycling on lithium ion batteries. They begin large scale battery manufacturing in 2021, in a factory powered 100% by clean energy. Northvolt raised a billion dollars in 2019. Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust was one of the early funders and features in most of our portfolios.
Packaging has been a big part of 2020 as Covid forced the pace of home delivery services. Smurfit Kappa, started as a family packaging company in the 1930s, it is now a world leader in packaging, paper, recycling and technology. A FTSE 100 business, science and technology drives its circular sustainable business model. Their products use 75% recycled fibre and it replaces the natural resources it needs. It features in Liontrust Sustainable Future Funds.
Close to home, Royal London Sustainable Diversified Trust is an investor in Scottish headquartered SSE, previously Scottish and Southern Energy, which no longer supplies energy to homes but is a major innovator in energy production using waste and wind. It was recognised as the first large business to provide the living wage to all its employees in 2013 and was awarded the fair tax mark in 2014.
A model of innovation and collaboration, Air Liquide, provides gases to industry, health care and transport in over 80 countries. It is growing by observing and anticipating society’s major challenges, in particular, energy and environmental transition, changes to health care and digitisation. It's reach is difficult to comprehend, from aeronautics to pharma and biotech, from professionals and craftsmen to waste and water management. All services focused on efficiency, waste reduction and sustainability. It is a core holding in the McInroy and Wood Balanced Fund.
Save & Invest has innovated too
Save & Invest's offices across the country have been virtually empty since the third week of March, but thanks to the investments we have made in technology over many decades, we have been able to work and look after our clients without interuption.
Video meetings with our clients are now commonplace and our clients have actively used their daily updated Weathpro Dashboard to watch the performance of their portfolios and read our views on funds and markets. We do expect that Brexit and daily changing news on Covid 19 will cause market volatility, but our portfolios are invested globally and we see many reasons for companies worldwide to thrive.
In the meantime, we continue to work actively researching opportunities and hope you and your families are safe and well and that 2021 will enable us to enjoy many of the freedoms we have all missed.
Let us check your portfolio free of charge. Email us to find out how to provide us details of your current portfolio securely or call us on the number below.
Our switchboard 0141 332 8088 is being diverted and answered remotely in normal office hours, while the majority of our team continues to work from home.
Please email us on email@example.com with general information on yourself and your portfolio.
Share this insight: