Our Investments

Ō Mātou Haumi

Otago Community Trust's ability to grant is underpinned by the performance of its investment portfolio.
Established in perpetuity, we aim to grow the value of our capital fund to keep pace with both inflation and population growth in the region.
At all times we aim to preserve capital and maximise the funding available for granting, with the flexibility to respond to investment opportunities as they arise. 

Statement of Investment Policy and Objectives (SIPO) 

The Statement of Investment Policy and Objectives (SIPO) prepared by the trustees of Otago Community Trust sets out the objectives, policies, and beliefs governing decisions about investments in relation to the Trust's assets, including our responsible investment policy.

The SIPO takes account of the requirements of:

  • The Trust Deed;
  • The Trust Act 2019; and
  • The Community Trusts Act 1999

Please download our latest SIPO below:


2023 PDF 199 KB


Investment Approach

Otago Community Trust is a long-term investor and as such, we strive to ensure that the fund will be worth just as much for future generations as it is for our communities today.

We have a well-diversified portfolio which is designed to navigate difficult environments and unexpected market conditions through time, including those posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Information on our strategic asset allocation and reserving policy can be found below. 

The trustees acknowledge that strategic asset allocation is the key investment decision as this will have the greatest impact on the Trust’s financial outcomes.

The trustees have agreed that an allocation of 45% to growth assets and 55% to income assets is appropriate in order for the trust to meet its long term objectives of consistent and sustainable distributions and real (after inflation) capital growth.

Growth assets are New Zealand and global shares. These assets are expected to provide higher returns over the long term.

Income assets comprise New Zealand and global fixed interest and cash. These assets are expected to provide lower, but more stable returns and protection against share market declines.

The Reserving chart for the year ending 31 March 2022 is outlined below, the detailed Reserving policy is outlined in the Otago Community Trust SIPO.

The Trust may change its investment strategy and/or granting depending on the outcomes relative to the inflation- adjusted capital, with a goal of avoiding falling significantly below the inflation-adjusted capital. 

2022 Reserving Chart





Investing Responsibly

The Trustees expect any appointed Fund Manager to avoid investing in any company whose activities would be deemed to be unlawful under New Zealand law, notwithstanding that the investment might be domiciled in another country. The Trust therefore would not expect to be invested in companies that are directly or indirectly involved in the following activities:

  • produce components that are key and dedicated to the production of anti-personnel mines and/or cluster munitions;
  • are involved, either directly or indirectly, in the production of the core nuclear weapon system, or components/services of the core nuclear weapon system, that are considered tailor-made and essential for the lethal use of the weapon.

Whilst not considered unlawful the Trust would generally not expect to be invested in companies that are directly or indirectly involved in the following activities:

  • the manufacture of tobacco.

The Trust would expect to be divested of any securities within 30 business days upon the Fund Managers becoming aware that a security should be excluded based on the criteria described above.

The Trust holds investments through pooled funds and therefore recognises it will have little or no influence over the structure of the product or securities held in the funds. However, in an attempt to influence the ESG consideration of the Fund Managers with which it invests the Trustees have shared the Trust’s Responsible Investment Policy with those managers.

The Trustees shall:

  • Advise their Consultant of this policy;
  • Require their Consultant to acknowledge, as part of its mandate from the Trust, that they will take this policy into account when providing investment research, analysis and advice to the Trust and in the choosing of the Trust’s Fund Managers;
  • Require their Consultant to seek to employ Fund Managers who incorporate ESG into their company analysis and who actively engage with companies on ESG issues;
  • Require the Consultant to report regularly to the Trust on how the Fund Managers are addressing environmental, social and governance issues as part of their activities, with reference to the UNGCP and the UNPRI.
  • Require the Consultant to advise the Trust if they become aware of any actions by the Fund Managers that may result in a breach in relation to this policy.
  • If there is a breach of the PDS, the Trust will require the Consultant to report the breach to the trustees as part of their monthly compliance reporting or as soon as is practicable. The Consultant will also report the following information to the trustees as soon as we are able to do so:
  • Details of the Fund where the breach has occurred
  • The nature of the breach and organisations involved
  • The timeline involved (when breach occurred, when and how it was discovered, when it was rectified)
  • The amounts involved (holding, income and profit/loss experienced by the Trust)
  • What enhancements, if any, have been or will be made to processes as a result of the breach.
  • The CE will report any breaches notified to the Board Chair or the Chair of AR&FC and jointly they will decide on a course of action with reference to the circumstances presented.

Appendices 3 and 4 discuss the UN Global Compact Principles and the UN Principles for Responsible Investment.

Appendix 1

UN Global Compact

The UN Global Compact asks companies to embrace, support and enact, within their sphere of influence, a set of core values in the areas of human rights, labour standards, the environment and anti-corruption.

The 10 Principles of the UN Global Compact

Human Rights

Principle 1         Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights; and

Principle 2         Make sure they are not complicit in human rights abuses


Principle 3         Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognitions of the right to collective bargaining

Principle 4         The elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour

Principle 5         The effective abolition of child labour; and

Principle 6         The elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.


Principle 7         Business should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges;

Principle 8         Undertake to promote greater environmental responsibility;

Principle 9         Encourage development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies.


Principal 10       Businesses should work against all forms of corruption, including extortion and bribery.

Appendix 2

UN Principles for Responsible Investment

As institutional investors, we have a duty to act in the best long-term interests of our beneficiaries.  In this fiduciary role, we believe that environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) issues can affect the performance of investment portfolios (to varying degrees across companies, sectors, regions and asset classes and through time).  We also recognise that applying these Principles may better align investors with broader objectives of society.  Therefore, where consistent with our fiduciary responsibilities, we commit to the following six principles of the UN PRI:

  1.        We will incorporate ESG issues into investment analysis and decision-making processes.
  2.        We will be active owners and incorporate ESG issues into our ownership policies and practices.
  3.        We will seek appropriate disclosure on ESG issues by the entities in which we invest.
  4.        We will promote acceptance and implementation of the Principles within the investment industry.
  5.        We will work together to enhance our effectiveness in implementing the Principles.
  6.        We will each report on our activities and progress towards implementing the Principles.