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Interview with the founder of Charity Investment Services

Interview with the founder of Charity Investment Services

As founder of Charity Investment Services, Bob Devine is helping charities maximise the return on their investment portfolios.  Audit Partner, Katherine Wilkes, spoke to Bob earlier this month to find out more:

1. Tell us more about your consultancy role?

After a career of fifty years in investment banking and asset management, the last five of which focused on asset management for charities, I established Charity Investment Services so that I could work as an investment consultant helping charities make good decisions about investing charity funds. I obtained written permission from the Charities Commission to incorporate my company name and to work in the charity sector as a consultant.

2. How can you help a charity in your role?

My duties as a trustee on the investment committee of Portsmouth Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust correspond almost identically with the services I can provide to any charity engaging my services to assist with investment matters.  These include

  • Drafting ethical and sustainable investment policy that complies with the charities policies.
  • Drafting investment strategies to complement the investment policy,  maintain the real value of the investment portfolio and generate a consistent and sustainable return over the medium and  long term.
  • Recommending to the trustees the appointment and termination of investment managers. I know all the investment management firms specialising in the management of charity investment portfolios.
  • With the trustees approval, setting and constantly reviewing the investment managers appropriate investment mandates ensuring consistency with the charities written investment policy and long-term investment strategy.
  • With the trustees approval, agreeing the terms of the appointment of investment managers including the level of portfolio management discretion, custody, dealing arrangements and investment management fees.
  • Establishing appropriate performance benchmarks for the investment managers and monitor and evaluate performance over relevant time horizons.
  • Monitoring the medium and long-term performance of the investment portfolios against the investment objectives, ensuring compliance with the charity’s investment policy and investment strategy.
  • Periodically reviewing the fees paid to investment managers and appraise value for money.  

3. How does your previous investment management role help you with your consulting?

Five years’ experience managing investment portfolios for charities has instilled in me good practice in maintaining an ethical and sustainable investment policy,  protecting the real value of the investment portfolios and in delivering absolute returns, within an acceptable level of risk. I have a good network within the investment management industry and know all the investment managers specialising in charities.

4. What are the largest charities you have worked with?

The Spinal Injuries Association (SIA), The St Vincent De Paul Society, The Association for Spinal Injury Research, Rehabilitation and Reintegration (Aspire) and the Portsmouth Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust.

5. Which charities are you best placed to help?

Any charity with quoted investments or reserves that could be invested in quoted investments to generate a return.

6. What successes have you had in your role?

On average I generated an 85% return on all the charity portfolios I managed for the period I managed them.  

If you’d like to find out more about Bob and his consultancy services please contact him via email or Tel: 07785 223094.

Find out more about Katherine Wilkes

Katherine Wilkes

Katherine Wilkes

Katherine is one of our Audit Partners

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