The Venture Capital Trust (VCT) market is on track to generate a significant increase in new inflows this year, according to Albion Ventures managing partner Patrick Reeve, but it is not yet clear what role platforms will play.
Excluding enhanced share buybacks, where existing holdings are reinvested into a new offer, VCTs raised about £250m in 2013. Reeve anticipates inflows of new money to grow by a further 40% to reach £350m by the end of 2014.
He said: "The investment climate is better, the stock markets are up and investors generally shell out a bit more when life is looking rosier.
"There has been an increasing realisation over the past few years as pensions have tightened that VCTs can be used as a supplement."
Reeve, while welcoming of the impending changes to the rules surrounding VCT purchases via platforms, is uncertain about whether it will have a measurable impact on the sector.
One of the measures announced as part of the Autumn Statement was an allowance for investors to subscribe for VCT shares through nominees.
Reeve said: "It is a very useful step. Because VCTs tend to be a very long-term hold, I do not know how big a take-up there will be over the short term for platforms but it is definitely a positive move."
Rival firm Octopus Investments recently outlined similarly positive expectations for 2014, citing the regulatory ban on the promotion of unregulated collective investment schemes (UCIS) to retail investors as another potential driving force.
Figures from HM Treasury show the total amount of funding raised by VCTs increased by 14% in 2012-13, rising from £325m to 2011-12 to reach £370m.
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