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Case Study - Sunnybank Investments

Winner of the BBC Working Lunch Award for "The Best Young Club of 2000". Sunnybank Investments has been running since 1999 when its eighth member turned 18. The members are a group of friends with a strong interest in business, finance or economics who were keen to develop their interest in the stock market and maintain contact with childhood friends.

Getting Started

Following successful completion of a sixth form scheme called 'Young Enterprise', the group decided they could also run an investment club successfully. All of the founding members attended the same school and as a result the club was named after the road the school was situated on.

Early Success

The first six months were very successful for the club. They spent a lot of time on research and even invited speakers to their meetings to gather more information.
The club's first investment was in Scottish Power which had a high yield and generated quite a bit of interest in the group. They then went on to make a profit from Kingston Communications. Between the formation of the club in March 1999 and the end of December 1999, the club made nearly 70% return on its investments!

Ups and Downs

The club has seen some ups and downs in the value of their portfolio and has, at times, ended up purchasing shares that cost them money. They also fell victim to the tech stocks rush.
Despite this, they have learnt from their initial mistakes and now conduct thorough research before investing. They only invest what they can afford to loose and would rather hold cash than make a hasty decision.

Sunnybank's Principles of Success
  • One vote per member

  • Rotate meetings between member's homes to include everyone

  • Increase minimum monthly subscriptions by 10% a year for the next 10 years to ensure a gradual, expected increase in subscriptions as the club's income and experiences grows

  • Accept votes by proxy and take decisions over the Internet to ensure everyone has their say

  • Conduct thorough research involving all members

  • Hold a maximum of 10 shares to ensure a thorough understanding of holdings

  • Communicate regularly and share ideas

  • Rotate positions of responsibility within the club

Social Activities

As a group, they often take part in pub quizzes, go to nightclubs, football matches and make trips to friends' universities. Members have even been on holiday to Tenerife together and inter-railing round Western Europe!

Media Spotlight

Sunnybank Investments plays an active role in promoting and recommending investment clubs to others, especially young people. They have helped other clubs get established and they regularly receive requests for advice.

The club was named as the BBC Working Lunch Young Club of 2000.