The Woodford Patient Capital Trust has raised its maximum £800 million target to become the biggest UK investment trust launch in history.
Earlier this month, the investment company, to be managed by Neil Woodford out of Woodford Investment Management (WIM), raised the capacity to £800 million from an original £200-£500 million to cater for strong investor demand.
The launch, which was oversubscribed by 10%, dwarfs the previous biggest UK trust launch - Mercury European Privatisation - which raised £549 million in 1994, according to the Association of Investment Companies.
The largest non-UK investment company launch was debt fund Prodesse, which raised £1.48 billion in April 2005.
The Woodford trust will invest in early stage quoted and unquoted companies in the UK and US, which will be accompanied with positions in blue chip companies for access to dividends.
He added: 'To raise £800 million to invest in a previously overlooked asset class is a tremendous endorsement of the patient capital strategy – and belief in our ability to identify the best, untapped growth opportunities with the aim of delivering exceptional long-term returns.'
AIC chief executive Ian Sayers added: 'It’s encouraging to see that Woodford Patient Capital is by far the largest UK investment company launch.
'It’s a testament to the investment company sector that this distinctive company is taking advantage of the benefits of the closed-ended structure, such as the ability to invest in specialist, small, less liquid assets.'