Ingenious launches EIS to pick wine

Investment and advisory group Ingenious has further diversified from its offering of media and clean energy products, announcing the launch of the Vindemia Wine Fund.

The fund, which will be a Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) fund, aims to raise £10 million and built a portfolio of companies trading in ‘quality, undervalued and marketable fine wines’ from regions including Bordeaux, Burgundy, Italy, Australia and Chile. Wine trader Peter Lunzer is to advise the fund’s management.

According to a statement from the firm, fine wine prices have seen significant price rises recently, boosted by restricted supply and growing global demand. Compounded annual growth over the past five years has been more than 17 per cent.

Traditionally an investor in media companies, and more recently cleantech, Ingenious’ launch of Vindemia is ‘consistent with our strategy of creating diverse investment offerings’, investment director Sebastian Speight comments.

Lunzer, found of Lunzer Investments, says, ‘Wine has proved to be a resilient sector over the past few years with a low correlation to global equity indices. It continues to show strong potential for capital growth going forward.’

The government introduced the EIS initiative in 1993 to encourage individuals to invest indirectly in unquoted, higher-risk trading companies by providing tax breaks and reliefs. An investor must stay invested in an EIS fund for a minimum of three years.

A new vintage for AIM with Wine Investors

Wine Investors is looking to raise £30 million, with both Arbuthnot and Keith, Bayley, Rogers & Co signed up as joint brokers.

The group’s assets will be managed by fund management outfit Anpero Capital. Director Andrew della Casa was the founding director of Anpero and The Wine Investment Fund. An Oxford graduate, he has had over 25 years’ experience in banking, including a stint at Samuel Montagu.

Anpero has developed a method of investing in wines using what it calls the ‘price step theory’, which refers to its belief that certain fine wines do not increase in value in a linear fashion, but rather in quick, short bursts over time. As that wine stock is reduced, so the value is dramatically increased. Hence the term ‘price step theory’.

The company adds that it will avoid investing in wines en primeur (before the wine is bottled) as the risk of uncertainty of its final quality is higher than the potential benefits in its opinion, while wines older than 20 years are avoided due to the lower liquidity in the market for older wines.

Wine Investors will be physically storing its wine in a UK government-bonded warehouse, and are to be stored and insured at their market value.

With the recent worries around the future of paper money as investors scramble to diversify their portfolio using investments such as gold, stamps, fine wines and commodities like palladium and silver, Wine Investors joins at a time when alternative asset classes and non-traditional investments are at their most attractive.

Todd Cardy

Todd Cardy

Todd was Editor of between 2010 and 2011 as well as being responsible for publishing our digital and printed magazines focusing on private equity and venture capital.

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Early Stage Funding