EISA creates committee to ‘demystify’ EISs

The Enterprise Investment Scheme Association has established a financial planning committee to “demystify and explain” enterprise investment schemes for financial advisors and wealth managers.

Through the initiative EISA said it will work to raise “greater awareness” of the investment, financial and tax planning benefits that EIS can bring to client portfolios. 

The decision comes after last week’s news that VCT and EIS provider Octupus Investments saw huge losses when an EIS marketed as low-risk bled almost £8m over four years.

One of the first activities of the committee, says EISA, will be researching adviser attitudes to both EIS and seed enterprise investment schemes, their levels of knowledge and expertise about the products, and whether there are barriers to their use. 

The committee will also work on seminars, workshops and other events.

EISA director general Sarah Wadham, who sits on the committee, adds: “There are many different ways that EIS/SEIS can be used by financial planners that could be highly beneficial to their clients and one of our main aims is to raise awareness of this. But to do that most effectively, it is important to understand how EIS/SEIS are viewed and used by financial planners and this research project will help us to do that.”

Last year EISA developed the EIS Diploma to help financial planners advise clients “with confidence” on EIS/SEIS.

Around 180 people have registered for the diploma, with 41 so far having completed and passed the course, according to EISA.