Press release

Wellcome Trust announces 2016/17 annual results

Wellcome Trust and Wellcome Trust Finance plc. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Wellcome Trust) announce that they have each published their Annual Report and Financial Statements for the year to 30 September 2017 today. A copy of each document is available on the Wellcome Trust website.

Wellcome Trust has today issued the following press release in connection with the publication of its Annual Report and Financial Statements:

The Wellcome Trust is pleased to report that our investment portfolio recorded a total return of 16.9% per cent for the year to 30 September 2017, equating to £3.5 billion on an investment portfolio value of £20.9 billion at the start of the year. Our charitable expenditure increased by 14% to £1.1 billion and the investment base rose to £23.2 billion.

Returns have been 138 per cent cumulative (9.1 per cent annualised) over ten years, a period which included the worst economic crisis in a generation, and 407 per cent cumulative (8.5 per cent annualised) over 20 years. Since the inception of our investment portfolio in 1985, it has provided a total return averaging 13.9 per cent a year. We maintain a AAA/aaa (stable) credit rating.

This year, we again enjoyed double-digit returns from every asset class except property. Each major element of the portfolio (public equities, private equities, venture capital, hedge funds and property) has performed strongly over the longer term.  Currency movements were less influential this year, with Sterling strengthening slightly so that the US Dollar return was 20.7 per cent.

Danny Truell announced earlier in the year that for health reasons he was moving to an advisory role.  After a global search conducted by David Barrett Partners, Wellcome decided to retain Nick Moakes and Peter Pereira Gray as the Managing Partners of the Investment Division, and additionally appoint Nick as Chief Investment Officer, and Peter as Chief Executive Officer of the Investment Division.

Baroness Manningham-Buller, Chair of the Trust, said: "I am pleased to report that, once again, our investments have done well. The performance of the endowment has enabled us to commit to maintaining charitable expenditure in real terms at record levels.  The level of spending is now double that of a decade ago, which puts Wellcome in the top tier of global funding organisations.  Our sincere thanks go to Danny Truell for his remarkable and invaluable contribution over the past twelve years.  We are confident that having achieved a smooth succession, Wellcome’s financial future will continue to be bright."