Trust funds show strong growth

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Published: 15 September 2017

Trust funds show strong growth

The value of Shetland Charitable Trust’s investments increased by more than £30 million in the financial year to March.

In the annual report presented to trustees on Thursday, auditors KPMG highlighted strong market conditions and the implementation of a new investment strategy as key factors behind the growth from £200 million in 2015-16 to £231 million.

The Trust disbursed almost £9 million to local charities and organisations to support the arts, heritage, leisure and social care in Shetland.

“It has been a good year for our investments on the world’s financial markets, unlike the previous year when returns were poor,” said Trust Chairman Bobby Hunter.

“Which goes to show that we cannot look at any single year in isolation – the Trust is a long-term investor.

“We have continued this year on the road to long-term financial sustainability with a planned, stepped reduction in our spending.

“Since its foundation in 1976, from the proceeds of an initial pot of £81 million the Trust has spent over £300 million – that’s more than £20,000 a day – to enhance the lives of folk living here.”

The Trust’s new investment strategy, which is designed to increase returns, resulted in Baillie Gifford being handed the mandate to manage half of its equities in an active equity fund.

BlackRock, Schroders and Insight manage the remaining reserves in equity, property and diversified growth funds.


For further information, please contact Paul Riddell of Platform Shetland on 07739 750543, 01595 697296 or

Notes to editors 

Shetland Charitable Trust is one of the largest such trusts in Scotland. The value of its investments is currently around £260m, with £232m invested in the world’s markets and £27m in the local economy. The remainder is net current assets. 

Funded originally by Shetland Islands Council’s “disturbance payments” from the oil industry between 1976 and 2000, the Trust now relies entirely on its investment income. 

The trust formerly comprised all councillors plus two independents. This changed in 2012 and again in 2017 and it is now a completely separate organisation from the council, with a built-in majority of independent trustees. 

Shetland Charitable Trust owns three companies: Shetland Leasing and Property Developments Ltd (SLAP); Shetland Heat Energy and Power Ltd (SHEAP); and SCT Renewables Ltd. 

Registered Charity No. SC 027025



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