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Unit Trusts

Affordable, convenient and effortless investment

Sanlam unit trusts give you access to South Africa’s top investment managers, so you don’t have to navigate the share markets by yourself. Our comprehensive range of personal finance products offers a multitude of risk and return options – there’s a solution for every risk appetite and investment horizon. You can also blend a combination of funds to create exactly the tailor-made portfolio you have in mind.

From R500 a month you enjoy access to professional investment managers and index tracking funds, offering you local and international investments. With no lock-in period, unit trusts give you plenty of options and flexibility. Invest in one or more of our unit trust options today, and start working towards your financial goals.

What is a Unit Trust?

Whether you’re saving for a home, holiday, rainy day or education, a unit trust is probably the easiest and most flexible way to save. Unit trusts allow you to invest in top performing companies without having to spend a fortune, and has the potential to generate greater returns than an ordinary bank account over the long run. Start today by investing a small amount every month, or whenever you can, and our experienced Sanlam investment experts will use your money to buy a selection of top performing shares and other assets on your behalf.

Watch the video to find out more about what a unit trust can do for you.

Tax-free Unit Trust

A tax-free unit trust is like any normal unit trust, except that you don’t pay any tax on your interest or dividends earned, and capital gains are tax free too. This means you don’t pay tax on the growth of your investment, which makes it a far more effective way to reach your goals. This tax benefit only applies to SA tax residents, and is limited to a maximum investment amount of R33 000 per tax year or R500 000 over a lifetime. Any contributions over these limits are taxed at 40%, so you would need to monitor your contributions closely.

With a tax-free unit trust you will enjoy all the normal benefits of a unit trust. Professionals manage your investments on your behalf. Your underlying assets will be managed on your behalf, and you won’t have to make any difficult investment decisions. The fund manager will also diversify your investment to protect it from being too exposed to a potential fall in the value of a single share. You can invest in a unit trust of your choice from as little as R500 a month, or a lump sum of R10 000.

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Unit Trust

A unit trust is a popular choice for investors who want access to blue chip shares and bonds, which are not cost-effectively available to direct investors with relatively small amounts to invest. Depending on the type of unit trust fund chosen, it could consist of shares, property, bonds and other fixed income assets – both locally and offshore.

Unit trusts offer various benefits to investors. Professionals manage your investments on your behalf. You don’t have to make any difficult investment decisions or monitor the underlying assets. This will be done for you. The fund manager will also diversify your investment to protect it from being too exposed to a potential fall in the value of a single share.

You can kick-start your journey by investing as little as R500 a month or a lump sum of R10 000. Always remember that unit trusts are a medium- to long-term investment – so give your money time to grow.

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Comparison between Tax-Free Unit Trusts and Unit Trusts

Tax-free Unit Trusts

  • By law you can only invest R33 000 per year or R500 000 over your lifetime
  • Any contributions beyond the aforementioned maximum limits are taxed at 40%
  • You pay no tax on your income or capital gains (only applicable to SA tax residents)

Unit Trusts

  • Your income and capital gains are taxable
  • Ideal option once you've exhausted the maximum investment amount limits of your tax-free unit trust
  • No maximum limits on how much you can invest – only minimum investment amounts, which vary from fund to fund

Tax-free Unit Trusts

  • By law you can only invest R33 000 per year or R500 000 over your lifetime
  • Any contributions beyond the aforementioned maximum limits are taxed at 40%
  • You pay no tax on your income or capital gains (only applicable to SA tax residents)

Unit Trusts

  • Your income and capital gains are taxable
  • Ideal option once you've exhausted the maximum investment amount limits of your tax-free unit trust
  • No maximum limits on how much you can invest – only minimum investment amounts, which vary from fund to fund

You can now transfer part or all of your tax-free investment between product providers. Simply contact us for more information.

Fund Risk Profile

Choose a unit trust that suits your needs.

When selecting a unit trust, you need to first consider your personal goals and determine where you are positioned on the risk scale. Ranging from conservative to aggressive, the risk scale outlines the different investor personalities to help you determine which fund is most suitable for you.

Low Risk
High Risk
You are very careful and want to protect your capital. Time Horizon: 1-2 years
You'd prefer not to take risks, but can be persuaded. Time Horizon: 3 years
You're willing to take risks with some of your assets. Time Horizon: 3-5 years
Moderate Aggressive
You understand the long-term risk/return trade-off. Time Horizon: 5 years
You're willing to risk more for maximum returns. Time Horizon: 5 years +
  • 1 of 5

There's nothing wrong with being a conservative investor. Generally, this means that you're reluctant to lose any of the money you put away, even if it means making a smaller return on your investments. Your longer-term return should still be a healthy 1% to 2% per annum above inflation.

Sanlam Investment Management Active Income Fund
Sanlam Investment Management Enhanced Yield Fund

Being a cautious investor means that you're willing to accept a small amount of risk for a short-term loss on your initial investment. On the flip-side, your longer-term returns should be between 3% and 4% per annum above inflation.

Sanlam Global Cautious Fund of Funds*
Sanlam Investment Management Inflation Plus Fund
Sanlam Multi Managed Defensive Fund of Funds*
Satrix Low Equity Balanced Index Fund

*These funds are not available as Tax-free options.

As a moderate investor, you are willing to accept a bit more risk in the short term, followed by probable returns of between 4% and 5% per annum above inflation in the future.

Sanlam Investment Management Balanced Fund
Sanlam Multi Managed Balanced Fund of Funds*
Satrix Balanced Index Fund

*These funds are not available as Tax-free options.

As a moderately aggressive investor, you probably believe that risk and reward go hand-in-hand. A higher level of risk on your investment should result in higher returns of about 5% per annum above inflation.

Sanlam Global Balanced Fund of Funds

If you're an aggressive investor, you're here to make as much of a return on your investment as possible, no matter the risk. If you're comfortable with high short-term risks, for probable long-term returns of 6% to 7% per annum above inflation, aggressive investing is for you.

Sanlam Global Equity Fund
Sanlam Investment Management General Equity Fund
Denker Sanlam Collective Investments Global Equity Feeder Fund*
Denker Sanlam Collective Investments Global Dividend Feeder Fund
Sanlam Investment Management Top Choice Equity Fund*
Sanlam Investment Management Value Fund
Satrix Dividend Plus Index Fund
Satrix Momentum Index Fund
Satrix MSCI World Equity Index Feeder Fund
Satrix Property Index Fund

*These funds are not available as Tax-free options.

For more information, view our daily prices.

Sanlam Investments Performance Fees FAQ

Multi Managed Collective Investment Schemes Performance Fees FAQ

Although all reasonable steps have been taken to ensure the information on this website is accurate, the Sanlam Collective Investments (RF) (Pty) Ltd / Satrix Managers (RF) (Pty) Ltd (“Sanlam Collective Investments”)/(“Satrix”) does not accept any responsibility for any claim, damages, loss or expense; however it arises, out of or in connection with the information. No member of Sanlam gives any representation, warranty or undertaking, nor accepts any responsibility or liability as to the accuracy of any of this information. The information to follow does not constitute financial advice as contemplated in terms of the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act. Use or rely on this information at your own risk. Independent professional financial advice should always be sought before making an investment decision.

Sanlam Group is a full member of the Association for Savings and Investment SA. Collective investment schemes are generally medium- to long-term investments. Please note that past performances are not necessarily an accurate determination of future performances, and that the value of investments / units / unit trusts may go down as well as up. A schedule of fees and charges and maximum commissions is available from the Manager, Sanlam Collective Investments (RF) Pty Ltd / Satrix Managers (RF) (Pty) Ltd, a registered and approved Manager in Collective Investment Schemes in Securities. Additional information of the proposed investment, including brochures, application forms and annual or quarterly reports, can be obtained from the Manager, free of charge. Collective investments are traded at ruling prices and can engage in borrowing and scrip lending.

Collective investments are calculated on a net asset value basis, which is the total market value of all assets in the portfolio including any income accruals and less any deductible expenses such as audit fees, brokerage and service fees. Actual investment performance of the portfolio and the investor will differ depending on the initial fees applicable, the actual investment date, and the date of reinvestment of income as well as dividend withholding tax. Forward pricing is used. The Manager does not provide any guarantee either with respect to the capital or the return of a portfolio. The performance of the portfolio depends on the underlying assets and variable market factors. Performance is based on NAV to NAV calculations with income reinvestments done on the ex-div date. Lump sum investment performances are quoted. The portfolio may invest in other unit trust portfolios which levy their own fees, and may result is a higher fee structure for our portfolio. All the portfolio options presented are approved collective investment schemes in terms of Collective Investment Schemes Control Act, No 45 of 2002 (“CISCA”). International investments or investments in foreign securities could be accompanied by additional risks such as potential constraints on liquidity and repatriation of funds, macroeconomic risk, political risk, foreign exchange risk, tax risk, settlement risk as well as potential limitations on the availability of market information.

The Manager has the right to close any portfolios to new investors to manage them more efficiently in accordance with their mandates. The portfolio management of all the portfolios is outsourced to financial services providers authorized in terms of the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act, 2002. Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd is the appointed trustee of the Sanlam Collective Investments Scheme/ Standard Chartered Bank is the appointed trustee of the Satrix Managers Scheme. A money market portfolio is not a bank deposit account. The price is targeted at a constant value. The total return to the investor is made up of interest received and any gain or loss made on any particular instrument and in most cases the return will merely have the effect of increasing or decreasing the daily yield, but that in the case of abnormal losses it can have the effect of reducing the capital value of the portfolio. Excessive withdrawals from the portfolio may place the portfolio under liquidity pressures and in such circumstances a process of ring-fencing of withdrawal instructions and managed pay-outs over time may be followed. A feeder fund is a portfolio that invests in a single portfolio of collective investment schemes, which levies its own charges and which could result in a higher fee structure for the feeder fund.

Invest Offshore

Diversify your portfolio with offshore investments.

With a presence in over 22 countries, Sanlam gives you access to a range of offshore investment solutions – across continents and asset classes. Investing in global markets enables you to diversify your investment portfolio, and:

  • Spread your portfolio over multiple markets to lower overall risk
  • See higher potential returns from a wider range of opportunities
  • Protect your investment against a depreciation in the rand and other country-specific risks
  • Enjoy smoother potential returns, when investing in different regions at different stages of their growth and economic cycles
  • Gain access to industries that are not locally available

We take great pride in offering prices that are competitive on an international level, and low cost structures that are designed to maximise your returns. You also have the option of investing either in rand, or directly offshore using your offshore investment allowance.

Please note: Unit trusts offer both rand and foreign denominated investment options, whereas tax-free unit trusts are restricted to rand denominated investments.


Select and complete a PDF fillable form. This can be emailed to or fax to 0860 724 467

We recommend speaking to a financial adviser before making any big investment decisions, or use our online investment tools to manage your money more efficiently.

New Investor

Application Form – Individual Investors
Application Form – Non-Individual Investors
Application Form – Tax-Free Unit Trusts
FICA Individual
FICA Non Individual Legal Entities

Existing Investor

Additional Investment Form
Investor Details Update Form
Disinvestment Form
ENG   |  AFR
Switching Form
Declaration to Confirm Residential Address
Cession Form
Transfer Form
Withholding Tax on Interest Declaration Form (WTI)
Dividends Tax Form - DTD(EX) - Exemption from tax
Dividends Tax Form - DTD (RR) - Reduced rate of tax
Tax information addendum - Entities
Tax information addendum - Individuals

Read more about regulatory requirements

Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI)
Terms and Conditions

Satrix Forms

Application form: Satrix Individual Investors (new investors only)
Application form: Satrix Tax-Free Unit Trusts (new investors only)


*Total expense Ratio - 31 March 2017 Download PDF

Effective Annual Cost (EAC)

The measure was introduced by the Association for Savings and Investments South Africa (ASISA) to help align the investments industry more fully with the principles of Treating Customers Fairly (TCF). ASISA provides clear guidelines on how EAC should be calculated and disclosed for investment products. EAC is aimed at helping clients compare costs across different investment products.

EAC is a summary measure derived from four components: investment management charges, advice charges, administration and other charges. ASISA prescribes how costs are classified as well as the calculation periods. The disclosure periods are one year, three years, five years and 10 years for unit trust investments. In terms of the prescribed calculation methodology, it is assumed that the client disinvests fully at the end of each of these periods. The ASISA standard on Effective Annual Cost is available on the ASISA website at

We provide you with the Effective Annual Cost (EAC), which is the industry standard for investments. From October 2017, we will provide Effective Annual Cost (EAC) information annually for new investments and whenever an investment transaction occurs that impacts the cost of your investment. Investment transactions that impact your cost include additional investments, increases in debit orders, and changes to a fee arrangement with your adviser.

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