Baillie Gifford fund appoints Van der Kuyl to board

Chris van der Kuyl

The £1 billion Baillie Gifford US Growth Trust plc announced the appointment of leading Scottish tech and media entrepreneur Chris van der Kuyl and Google executive Rachael Palmer as non-executive directors of the company with effect from June 1, 2021.

The trust’s 10 biggest investments as of April 30 were: Shopify, Amazon, Wayfair, Tesla, The Trade Desk, Twilio, Moderna, Roku, Zoom and Netflix.

The investment trust said: “Chris van der Kuyl is one of Scotland’s leading entrepreneurs working across the technology, media, gaming and entertainment sectors.

“Chris is most notably co-founder and chairman of multiple award-winning games developer 4J Studios, best known for developing Minecraft for Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo games consoles.

“He and fellow co-Founder Paddy Burns launched Chroma Ventures, the investment arm of 4J Studios, in 2021.

“Chris is also chairman of Puny Astronaut, TVSquared, Broker Insights, Stormcloud Games and Parsley Box Plc and sits on the boards of Blippar, Ace Aquatec, and ADV Holdings.

“Alongside his commercial roles, he was the founding chairman of Entrepreneurial Scotland and is currently a member of multiple advisory and local charity boards.

“Elected as one of the youngest Fellows of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2013, he has also been awarded honorary degrees from the University of Dundee, Abertay University, the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier University and the University of Strathclyde …

“Chris has a beneficial interest of 6,178 ordinary shares of the company …

“Rachael Palmer is an experienced strategy, marketing and business development professional with extensive experience working within the technology sector.

“Currently, Rachael leads Google’s VC and Startup Partnerships for the Europe, Middle East and Africa region.

“Before Google, Rachael consulted to numerous startups and led marketing and business development efforts for EY’s world famous Entrepreneur of the Year Program.

“Rachael has also held positions at American Express and Microsoft where she held various product, marketing and business development roles.

“Rachael received her MBA from The Wharton School and her BSE in Computer Science & Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania.

“The appointments of Mr Chris van der Kuyl and Miss Rachael Palmer fall to be ratified by shareholders at the Annual General Meeting of the Company to be held in September 2021.”

The investment trust’s marketing material says it “aims to produce long-term capital growth by investing predominantly in equities of companies which are incorporated, domiciled or conducting a significant portion of their business in the United States of America” and that “up to a maximum of 50% of assets may be invested in companies not listed on a public market.”

The fund’s managers are listed as Gary Robinson and Kirsty Gibson.

The marketing material adds: “We have observed that, increasingly, companies in the US are choosing to remain private for longer, and as such the public equity markets do not offer the full spectrum of growth investment opportunity that we have previously enjoyed.

“The Trust’s ability toinvest up to 50% of NAV in private companies at the time of purchase gives us the flexibility to invest in what we believe are the exceptional growth companies in the US, whatever their listed status.

“We take a five-year view when investing in stocks and are not driven by short-term trends.”

On the fund’s target market, the marketing material says: “The Trust is suitable for all investors seeking a fund that aims to deliver capital growth over a long-term investment horizon.

“The investor should be prepared to bear losses.

“The Trust is compatible for mass market distribution.

“The Trust may not be suitable for investors who are concerned about short-term volatility and performance, who are seeking a regular source of income or who may be investing for less than five years.

“The Trust does not offer capital protection.”