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ATST - Alliance Trust News Story

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Large Cap
Market Cap £3.08bn
Enterprise Value £3.32bn
Revenue £263.4m
Position in Universe th / 1819

Alliance Trust PLC - Portfolio Update: Alliance Trust Stock Picker Changes and commitment to targeting net zero by 2050

Fri 16th April, 2021 9:14am
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Portfolio Update: Alliance Trust Stock Picker Changes and commitment to
targeting net zero by 2050

Alliance Trust PLC today announces that its investment manager, Willis Towers
Watson (WTW), has appointed Metropolis Capital Limited (Metropolis) and Sands
Capital Management, LLC (Sands) as two new Stock Pickers for its multi-manager
global equity portfolio.

With more than $68bn in client assets(1), Sands is an independent,
employee-owned firm based in the Greater Washington D.C. area of the United
States. It specialises in investing in concentrated portfolios of high-quality
businesses from around the world that are innovative and can sustain
above-average growth over the long term. The lead manager on the Alliance
Trust mandate will be A. Michael Sramek who has been with the firm since 2001.

Metropolis is a UK-based investment management firm specialising in
unconstrained, high conviction, global equity investment. With each having
well over 20 years’ experience, founders Simon Denison-Smith and Jonathan
Mills are value investors with a private equity style of evaluating holdings.
They focus on long-term market recognition of the fundamental value of their
investments and income generated from those investments. Metropolis has assets
under management of $1.4bn(1).

Metropolis is being initially allocated c.9.5% of the Company’s portfolio to
manage, while Sands will be allocated c.8%.  This will be funded from a
reallocation of the portfolio from the existing eight Stock Pickers. A
transition manager has been appointed and Metropolis’ and Sands’
appointments will be effective once the transition has been completed. In
keeping with WTW’s philosophy for the Alliance Trust strategy, the overall
exposure of the portfolio will remain broadly style, sector and region
neutral, seeking to generate market outperformance primarily from stock

The Company and WTW also announces today they are targeting net zero
greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 for the Company’s portfolio and aiming to
reduce emissions over the medium term on a pathway that is consistent with the
goals of the Paris Agreement and the principles of the Institutional Investors
Group on Climate Change Net Zero Investing Framework.

As part of its responsible investment approach, the Company encourages its
Stock Pickers to engage actively with investee companies on their own plans to
reduce their emissions and employs EOS at Federated Hermes as an engagement
specialist. In addition, WTW monitors the carbon intensity of the Company’s
portfolio against recognised benchmarks and other metrics. Recognising the
significant challenge that climate change presents, the Company has decided
that its portfolio should also be managed in line with the attainment of net
zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Craig Baker, Chairman of the Alliance Trust Investment Committee and Global
Chief Investment Officer of Willis Towers Watson, said:

“Sands and Metropolis have proved themselves to be highly skilled stock
pickers with strong track records of adding value for mainly institutional
clients. We believe they will bring differentiated sources of return to the
Alliance Trust portfolio and provide further flexibility in terms of how we
allocate capital. In addition, being strategically ahead of a net zero
transition will, in our opinion, significantly improve risk-adjusted returns.
This will come from two sources – better market returns due to more
effective stewardship and outperformance opportunities as the mispricing of
climate issues is resolved.”

Further information on both Metropolis and Sands will be available on the
Company’s website ( where you can also find its
Responsible Investment Statement and quarterly Responsible Investment Reports.


About Alliance Trust PLC (ATST)

Alliance Trust PLC is one of the oldest and largest investment trusts in the
UK, offering a diversified but highly active global equity portfolio at a
competitive cost. The portfolio is managed by Willis Towers Watson which
selects best-in-class stocks pickers from around the world, all with different
styles and approaches to investing, and asks them to invest only in their best
ideas. Alliance Trust is an AIC Dividend Hero with 54 consecutive years of
rising dividends.

 For more information, please contact:                                                                     
 Mark Atkinson Head of Marketing and Investor Relations    Sarah Gibbons-Cook                              
 Alliance Trust PLC                                        Quill PR                                        
 Tel: 07918 724303                                         Tel: 020 7466 5050 /  

(1) As at 31 December 2020
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