Alliance Trust plc (LSE: ATST) is a publicly-traded investment and financial services company, headquartered in Dundee, Scotland. Established in 1888, the firm operates the largest investment trust in Britain. Alliance Trust is the tenth-largest company based in Scotland. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and has been a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index since February 2008.
The Alliance Trust was formed by the 1888 merger of three Dundee-based mortgage and land companies: the Dundee Investment Company, the Dundee Mortgage and Trust and the Oregon and Washington Trust (which was set up to provide loans to immigrant farmers on the West Coast of the United States). The company subsequently expanded into other asset classes. In 1918 the firm agreed to share premises and other costs with the Western & Hawaiian Investment Company, a mortgage lender which initially focused its business on sugar planters in Hawaii before expanding. Five years later it was renamed The Second Alliance Trust, although no formal merger between the two took place.
The trusts later moved into fixed income investing in the 1920s and 30s, before adding significant quantities of shares to their portfolios in the late 1950s. A savings division was established by Alliance Trust in 1986, offering pensions and other investment products. A formal merger with The Second Alliance Trust was finally conducted in 2006, as the investment strategies of the two companies had come to closely resemble each other. The merger greatly increased the market cap of the company, aiding it in gaining promotion to the FTSE 100 in February 2008.
The company left its headquarters of over 90 years, Meadow House, on June 1, 2009 for a purpose-built facility on 8 West Marketgait in Dundee City Centre. The company also has facilities and offices in Edinburgh and London.