Francis Maude’s other chairmanship was of something called the Jubilee Investment Trust (JIT). JIT made headlines for him after a multi-million pound investment in a Californian “adult entertainment” business allowed the Mirror to have a lot of fun front-paging him as a porn baron. In mysterious circumstances the porn investment failed, rumours that Italian gentlemen had got the better end of the deal (the movie rights, the physical DVD stock) and the trust ended up with a shell of a company have never been cleared up. As the chart shows, shareholders in JIT lost 73% of their money in a period when the market itself rose 154%. Not an easy achievement in that kind of market environment. Spectacularly bad investment judgement that beggars belief as well as investors.
The moral of this story: never invest in a business run by a politician or do business deals with Italian – American porn merchants.
The JIT is now to be wound up with whatever cash is left over in the fund being returned to shareholders.
Bob Maxwell, Geoffrey Robinson, Francis Maude – caveat emptor…