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Impact investing: why Andy Murray decided to invest for growth and impact
Last month, Wimbledon's defending champion Andy Murray was knocked out of the world's most famed tennis competition at the quarter final stage. Hampered by a hip injury, he left Wimbledon at the quarter-final stage at the hands of the US's Sam Querrey.
Whilst Andy is understandably taking time out to regain full fitness, the world's number two tennis star will have some time to reflect on his burgeoning investment portfolio - and no doubt planning how he aims to grow and diversify in what now seems like his second passion of investing in startup and early stage businesses.
Investing in the next wave of British businesses
In recent times Andy Murray has made a range of investments in a number of startups and early stage businesses, taking a stake and helping to develop the British business market.
To date, Andy has invested in everything from healthy eating chain Tossed through to Trillenium, a builder of online shopping experiences (itself backed by online retailer ASOS).
"Being able to support British businesses and entrepreneurs in an innovative way definitely appeals to me and there are plenty of brilliant ideas and talented people out there"
He's also an active part of the Fuel Ventures Fund, a fund that invests in e-commerce companies and is run by Mark Pearson of myvouchercodes.co.uk.
Additionally, the multi-millionaire’s off-court business interests include stakes in sports nutrition business MiTonics and mobile advertising firm Adludio.
Having been building up his business assets over the past few years, Andy has invested in his own management agency - 77 Management (which interestingly used to be called 'Parched Investments') - which has £11m in cash and over £16m in assets further to a number of Andy's lucrative sponsorships, whilst also controlling the Cromlix hotel near Dunblane, his home town.
Making investments in an area of expertise
The Wimbledon champion has a clear interest in health, sport and the environment, and he's taking his knowledge and experience in these areas to his investment career.
Having made over 25 investments so far, many perfectly show his interest in the above areas of expertise.
What's particularly interesting is these areas naturally lend themselves well to impact investing, that being opportunities which not only generate high growth investment returns, but also generate social and/or environmental impact - essentially doing some good.
"I'm hoping I can learn something from how they are edging ahead of the competition and take that vision onto the court with me"
A perfect example is his investment into Mindful Chef. Investing alongside Olympian gold medallist Victoria Pendleton and rugby champion Will Greenwood, Mindful Chef is a service that delivers ingredients for meals, giving the customer everything they need to cook healthy and nutritious meals with minimal waste.
In a similar vein, an investment was made in 2016 into calorie-conscious Oppo Ice Cream, which reported "a like-for-like revenue growth of 744% in May and June . That was 340% above its revenue target."
Similarly, he's also helping reduce carbon footprints by investing in Sell My Livestock, a company that supplies meat direct from the farm, whilst his investment in MacRebur helps support the company use waste plastic to build longer-lasting roads.
It doesn't take much digging to see the common themes with Andy Murray's investments - the vast majority are within sectors he's involved in whilst being designed to make an impact.
Portfolio diversification - achieving high growth returns whilst doing some good
Although only 30 years old, Andy Murray is almost a perfect example of a successful celebrity investor. Not only is he investing in causes whereby he has knowledge and experience, but it's evident he truly understands the importance of a varied investment portfolio.
Taking into account the investments already mentioned, Andy has also invested in benefits scheme Perkbox, peer-to-peer travel money platform WeSwap, cycle navigation app Beeline, pet monitoring app Dog Tracker Nano, and 'beauty on demand' service blow LTD.
“It’s important to me that I back people who I believe have the same dedication, hunger and professional standards as myself and always strive to be their best"
Fully appreciating the need to build a broad investment portfolio, his approach is not only impact driven so to have a positive impact on society, but provides a stable foundation to mitigate loss and see financially growth.
The appeal of impact investing
One of the reasons Andy Murray is such an interesting celebrity investor is he clearly has a focus on impact investing - and this is one of GrowthFunders' core areas.
Impact investing can be a great way to add diversification to a core investment portfolio. We want to help investors invest in opportunities that make a difference and that specifically provide measurable solutions to long-term social and environmental challenges.
The GrowthFunders approach to impact investing provides capital to address some of the world’s most pressing challenges in our chosen sectors - growth SMEs, property and clean energy.
Mainstream impact investment is financially driven, but positive impact must be core to a company’s business strategy and guide their technologies, products, services and business models.
And from the 30 year old's investments to date, it's crystal clear that Andy Murray is fully aware of this and is investing in a way that will truly impact on the world.
This post is part of our UK celebrity investors series. You can find our introductory post to the series here.