Management of the foundations’ endowment aims to maximise the return on investment in the long term, and in so doing permitting the foundations to continue making grants and obtain the greatest benefit to society.
In principle, the foundations’ investment horizon is unlimited. That gives the foundations (unlike many other investors) the opportunity to make long-term investments if they will increase the foundations’ returns. We strive to place some of the foundations’ capital in less liquid assets and in so doing increase the overall return on the endowment.
Our investment department follows the guidelines established by the Department of Civil Affairs, Danish Ministry of Justice, for non-profit foundations.
The boards set the guidelines
VILLUM FONDEN and VELUX FONDEN work in accordance with the guidelines and special permits from The Department of Civil Affairs.
The boards of directors of VILLUM FONDEN and VELUX FONDEN are responsible for setting the guidelines for the two organisations’ investments.
The investment department regularly presents the boards with suggestions for changes to the foundations’ investment profiles. Recommendations for changing the investment guidelines are presented as necessary. Doing so ensures that the foundations’ investment strategies are up-to-date, and that they keep pace with developments on the financial markets.
Foreign investments are made by international specialists experienced in the relevant field. These specialists are selected based on their expertise and their ability to earn competitive returns.
We seek to invest in companies that focus on compliance with international conventions and increased responsible conduct as well as sustainable corporate administration. We consult with external advisors who screen our investments in shares and corporate bonds and conduct the subsequent engagement process in case that improper conduct has occurred. We believe in the value of dialogue and strive to make our position clear by entering into constructive dialogue, together with other investors, with companies in order to change any improper conduct and e.g. by casting our vote at general meetings with a view to promoting responsible behaviour. We consider this activity as a basis for our overall objective of achieving the highest possible return on investment in the long run to the benefit of the foundation's long-term grant potential and thereby for the common good.
We have decided that green impact investments should constitute 10% of our tied-up assets by 2020. Green impact investments have a dual purpose of generating attractive financial returns alongside clearly defined green impacts and as such they contribute to the transition towards a more environmentally sustainable society. Examples of green impact investments include investments in increased energy efficiency, renewables and the development of new green technologies for the future.
THE VELUX FOUNDATIONS have established an Investment Committee, which discusses investment-related topics of relevance to the two foundations. The Investment Committee monitors our investment-management and the returns on those investments. The boards of directors and the management of the foundations are represented on the Investment Committee. Committee members also include two external experts not affiliated with the foundations.
MSc. Economics Dorrit Vanglo, CEO, LD, external member
MSc. Economics Jan Østergaard, CIO, Industriens Pension, external member
MSc. Jens Kann-Rasmussen, Manager, VELUX A/S, chairman, VILLUM FONDEN
D.Sc. Jens Oddershede, Professor, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Pharmacy, University of Southern Denmark, board member, VELUX FONDEN