Beleaguered fund manager Neil Woodford was dealt another blow on Friday after his Woodford Patient Capital Trust PLC (LON:WPCT) was forced to cut the value of one of its investments.
Link Fund Solutions – which is responsible for valuing the fund’s unquoted investments – is to cut its estimate of how much Woodford’s stake in ‘cold-fusion’ specialist Industrial Heat is worth.
Overall, the trust’s net asset value is expected to take a 3.4p per share hit from the change, representing a reduction of about 4%.
The write-down comes less than a year after the Woodford fund marked up the value of its stake in Industrial Heat by 357% to US$113mln.
Industrial Heat, one of the fund’s top holdings, has received backing from the likes of actor Brad Pitt and Steve Job’s billionaire widow, Laurene.
It is attempting to develop power sources that run on “low-energy nuclear reactions”, although its work has attracted criticism given that there is little evidence that it works.
Today’s markdown is the latest blow to Woodford, once one of London’s star stock pickers.
Millions of investors in his larger Equity Income fund have been unable to withdraw their cash for months, after it was forced to suspend dealing due to high redemptions from investors and a large allocation to unlisted, hard-to-trade companies.
WPCT shares, which have halved in value so far this year, dropped another 6% to 41.3p on Friday morning.