Wellcome Trust throws support behind private equity

The Wellcome Trust
, the largest charity in the UK, has thrown its full support behind the
private equity industry and the tax regime that supports it.

The industry has come in for harsh criticism from unions and politicians, who
have criticised private equity players of greed and asset-stripping. These
accusations have prompted calls to scrap the tax relief on interest offered in
the UK.

The Wellcome Trust, however, has warned that changing the tax regime would
drive away investment and have ‘disadvantageous’ consequences for the economy.

In a letter to the
, Danny Truell, chief investment officer of the Wellcome
Trust, warned that scaring off hedge funds and private equity would have dire
consequences for the UK.

‘First, lower overall investment returns would reduce our ability to continue
to increase our support for the UK’s position as a world leader in biomedical
research, and, second, lower UK returns would drive us to redeploy more of our
investment portfolio outside the UK,’ Truell said.

The Wellcome Trust is the UK’s biggest institutional owner of
buy-out and venture capital funds.

Further reading:

Unions launch campaign for interest relief reform

relief measures ‘will make UK less attractive’

Labour denies talk of tax attack on City bonuses

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