The majority of the foundation's annual funds provided for the fulfillment of its purpose comes from Hans Schöpflin's "Family Office". His assets are invested there in a diversified manner. In order to create transparency of the source of funds, Hans Schöpflin has answered the following questions about his investment decisions:
1. When selecting investments, are there explicit criteria in which sectors or business areas should not be invested?
Hans Schöpflin: Let’s first talk about what we invest in, before describing what we exclude.
We invest in people. In our view, quality people are the primary determinant of investment outcomes. We partner with management teams and Boards possessing the desired skills, talent, ethics and drive to achieve uncommon investment results.
We search for areas offering outsized capital growth potential, primarily in two industry sectors:
(i) healthcare (specifically, oncology, therapeuric drug development – diseases of the eye, liver, skin; and various medical devices addressing incontinence, the heart, and knee replacement); and
(ii) information technologies (namely, cyber-security and fintech).
These two broad sectors comprise the majority of my portfolio AUM (Assets Under Management). The remainder of AUM is represented by diversified global funds and US real estate (principally, multi-family apartments and land).
My personal interests, reflected in how I invest, are focused upon the health, well-being, and productivity of humanity.
Our investment acumen is strengthened by collaboration with a strong independent expert network and an internal state of constant learning. We hold, monitor, study, and report upon positions for the long term. I have three distinct advantages over other investors: I can afford to take some risk, I seek certain ingredients to enhance the probability of success, I am sufficiently patient to allow quality management teams execute their plans.
I can tell without reservation that we do not invest into companies or funds with known strategies focused upon:
However, nor am I like a pension fund with the individual financial heft able to impart investment restrictions on fund managers.
2. Is business policy influenced by companies in which shares are held in the sense of ESG topics (environment / social / governance)? If so, are there explicit targets for this, commitment goals?
Many of our fund managers in the US and UK have already adopted ESG principles of their own, consistent with the principles one would expect.
We have not set explicit ESG policy targets by design. My stance to this question has been learned from experience. I have found that ESG or socially-responsible investing (SRI) means so many different things to different people – this creates confusion and muddles investment strategy. A successful SRI policy using targets is quite difficult to define and execute in practice. Additionally, the emphasis given to SRI metrics can run contrary to sound investing. We have found SRI managers making investments they shouldn’t. This brings us back to my first tenet of investing – invests in quality people. Instead of trying to force specific levels of investment that may not be capital efficient, I have sought to build a portfolio that meets sound investment criteria in a responsible manner.
3. What publicly available reporting on investment management is available?
There is no public information about Schoepflin family wealth, and I hope everyone can understand why I wish to keep it that way. Disclosure of holdings could have detrimental effects upon realizable value. In the spirit of transparency, I would like to share how my wealth came about. I have had some extraordinary investment success over the years:
I have spent years building up and around these and other stocks as the companies matured, diversifying into global funds and US multi-family real estate, but the concentrated venture investments I made decades ago created the wealth I have today.