Gee and Watson

Our clients have very limited exposure to this fund but, in view of recent press announcements, we think the following will be helpful.

Initially, the fund was suspended to enable Woodford to manage an orderly sale of assets in anticipation of significant withdrawals when the fund was reopened. It was expected that this would happen in December 2019.

However, the fund's administrators grew concerned that the restructuring was not proceeding quickly enough and, consequently, a further suspension would be likely. Additionally, administrators feared that the fund may face a "fire sale" whereby assets would be sold below market value and thus disadvantage investors. A decision was therefore taken to wind up the fund and Neil Woodford is no longer the investment manager.

This fund will be split into two parts:

 Portfolio A        -        mainly larger companies which are listed, and which can be sold relatively quickly

 Portfolio B        -        smaller companies which are unlisted and much more difficult to sell (illiquid assets).

The administrators anticipate that Portfolio A assets will be distributed in cash commencing January 2020. Portfolio B depends on the progress of realising these assets and no timeline has been announced yet. The value of both portfolios is dependent on the value of assets sold and is therefore currently unknown.

It is anticipated that clients holding the Woodford fund via the Old Mutual Wealth platform will have cash returned to their investment and held as cash. Nearly all our clients with the fund in their portfolio(s) have provided us with appropriate letters of authority, so that when these events happen monies will be reinvested into an alternative fund without any further action needed from our clients.

 Further information will be provided to our clients, by our advisers, at their next scheduled review meeting.

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