2016 was the year of uncertainty and the unexpected. For Abundance it was a year of preparation. Preparation for the coming of our ISA eligibility and when it finally arrived on November 1st, we were blown away by the response. More than 1300 customers opened ISAs with Abundance in 2016, investing more than £6m in projects (in just over 6 weeks) and transferring cash from existing ISAs from traditional giants of the financial services world.
All in all you raised more than £17m for our issuers across a range of technologies, so much so we found ourselves sold out for Christmas. With the obvious break over the festivities our expanded projects team is working hard on new projects to bring to you in time for the more conventional ISA rush in the run up to the April tax year end. Just a reminder that you can invest up to £15,240 of your ISA allowance for this year across your cash, stocks and shares and now of course, our, Abundance IFISA.
The exciting news to add is that Abundance is shifting to thinking bigger than renewable energy. Coinciding with the new government’s focus on industrial strategy (in particular the need to invest in infrastructure that supports the development of the economy) Abundance is looking at a range of socially useful investments which can complement our offering of renewable energy projects.
When we asked you in September, the response was an overwhelming positive for expanding the range of win win investments your money can help make happen. Areas such as education, health, broadband, local authorities services, social housing etc were all viewed as positive next steps for our team to consider. We think there is a real opportunity to make sure the smaller, more locally focused projects get the funding they need – projects which are overlooked by the usual backers of such long term investments.
The whole thrust of the government strategy is that the national headlines don’t hide the need for local renewal and that more people, specifically ordinary investors such our yourselves, share in the returns to be made in supporting the development of a sustainable economy.
The response from the market, the people who put together those projects, has been positive also and we are now actively examining a number of deals which we hope to see over the coming months on our site.
And don’t worry, those of you who are keen to back more renewable energy projects, there is still plenty to do there as the cost of renewables comes down further and starts to compete on a level playing field with new developments in unsustainable alternatives.
We are always happy to hear feedback and ideas from our customers so feel free to email myself, Karl or Lou directly through our firstname.lastname@example.org email if you have any comments on the future direction for investments that let you turn a profit without turning a blind eye.
Part or all of your original capital may be at risk and any return on your loan or investment depends on the success of the project. Investments tend to be long term and may not be readily realisable. Estimated rates of return are variable and estimates are no guarantee of actual return. Consider all risks before investing.