Scottish Value shows 62% rise

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SCOTTISH Value Trust, the vulture of the investment trust sector, comfortably outstripped its investment trust rivals in its latest financial year.

In the year to 30 September, Scottish Value increased its net assets by 62 per cent to 97.3p per share.

This compares with a 25 per cent rise in the FTA All Share index and a 47 per cent rise in the investment trust index. Scottish Value said it had outperformed every other trust specialising in financial shares.

Colin McLean, the fund's manager, said Scottish Value's net asset value had since pressed on to 102p a share.

Scottish Value takes stakes in underperforming investment trusts that it feels are ripe for restructuring. Big successes in the past year have included Drayton Consolidated and Independent Investment Company, the remains of which have become Second Consolidated and Ivory & Sime Enterprise Capital respectively.

Scottish Value is backing last week's offer for Baillie Gifford Technology Trust, in which it has a 25 per cent stake.

Mr McLean said the trust had also done well with its holding in Aberdeen Trust, the quoted fund management firm.

Since Scottish Value first started building up its 15 per cent stake, Abtrust's shares have risen from 23p to 60p.

'Our view was that it was a good quality business,' Mr McLean said. 'It had some well recognised and good-performing investment managers.'

Scottish Value was formed in July 1991 from Bremner, the listed cash shell best known for its repeated boardroom and shareholder battles.

Since launch, the trust's net assets have more than doubled and have now reached about pounds 48m.

Scottish Value's pre-tax revenue rose from pounds 466,000 to pounds 1.15m. But because of last year's fund-raising through a placing and open offer, earnings per share slipped slightly from 1.78p to 1.76p.

The trust paid a final dividend of 0.95p to make a total of 1.8p a share. It reaffirmed its intention of matching the dividend yield of the average investment trust.