I have been investing with the Yova impact investing platform since April 2020. Here is my review. Make sure to check out my fully disclosed performance of my Yova investments at the end of this article.
In a nutshell
- Yova is an impact investing platform, made in Zurich, Switzerland
- You can choose from industry sectors that are most important to you, e.g. renewable energies, plant-based foods, circular economy and other topics
- It’s easy: You send a monthly payment to Yova and they invest your money according to your personal strategy and values
- The fees are between 0.6% and 1.2% p.a. of your portfolio value
- I think Yova is great for off-hands investing and creating positive impact while also generating long-term profits
- The first 8 months have been very successful for me
- Get 6 months of no-fees when you signup here with my referral code: 59385*
Do you want to make your money work for you and create a positive impact in the world? With “impact investing” you can combine financial gains and sustainable impact.
I have been investing as a private investor for 3 years. I am invested in different asset classes and tried out multiple investment opportunities including: Stocks (actively traded), ETFs, direct startup fundings, P2P lending and Yova.
Yova is an impact investing platform from Zurich, Switzerland. Yova offers you an easy way to invest money in sustainable and impact-focused assets.
You can sign up for free here* and create a personalized investment strategy. Answer some questions about your risk profile and choose the impact topics that are most important to you.
You can choose from “Handprint” topics (What is the company working on?) and “Footprint” topics (How does a company work?). You can also exclude companies that have interests in certain industries such as meat, nuclear or tobacco.
Yova offers you the choice between 12 topics for a better world:
- Renewable Energy
- Energy-Saving Technology
- Clean Water
- Circular Economy
- Sustainable Forestry
- Plant-Based Food
- Access to Medicine
- Disease Eradication
- Digital Champions
- Transport of the Future
- Swiss Champions
- Advancing Education
Yova defines the “Foodprint” as 4 pillars of good business practice:
- Low Carbon Emissions
- Gender Equality
- Fair Pay
- Human Rights
My experience with Yova
Impact Investing Strategie
I chose my impact topics and created my personal investment strategy with Yova. I was a bit confused that Yova recommended to put 20% of my investments in government bonds.
Government bonds have been generating close to zero returns in the last years if you include inflation. That’s why I found them very unattractive compared to other investment opportunities and never invested in them before. You can exclude them completely from your Yova strategy if you want to.
I sent a message with my question on government bonds to the Yova support. Within a few hours I got a very friendly and professional answer.
We recommend government bonds only as a small part of your investment for risk diversification, also because the government bonds often perform better when it looks bad on the stock markets. On average, we expect a return of 1.5-2% per year on government bonds and about 7% on stocks.From the Yova support team (translated from German for my english readers)
By the way, the government bonds are held via government bond ETFs. This increases diversification and risk spreading at very low fees.
In the meantime I also had some contact with the support team and found them always very responsive and professional.
One thing I really like about Yova: They are 100% digital. I could sign my contract and get started with a video call and a digital signature.
- Easy and passive impact investing
- No experience in trading necessary
- Manageable risk levels with investment horizons of more than 10 years
- Personal values are reflected in the investment strategy
The advantages can also be disadvantages depending on the type of investor.
- No direct management of the portfolio and therefore no market timing possible
- This means e.g. if I want to buy the Beyond Meat share at 50 USD during the Corona crisis, I cannot actively manage this.
- By default a black box with little insight into the actual portfolio and the shares held*.
*On request you can get access to a live dashboard of SAXO Bank with which you can see the individual shares and live market values. More on this below.
I find the fees of 1.2% (from 2,000 CHF assets) to 0.6% p.a. (from 500,000 CHF assets) are fair. Here is a comparison of Yova’s fees compared to a typical direct bank custody account.
A = Direct Bank Portfolio in Germany, B = Direct Bank Portfolio in Switzerland
|Order fee (Cost per share |
purchase or sale)
|€ 9.90||CHF 9||€/CHF 0|
|Annual custody fee||€ 0||CHF 60||€/CHF 0|
|Asset management p.a.||€ 0||CHF 0||0,6% – 1,2%|
5 share purchases p.m.
8,000 CHF/EUR Assets
|€ 9.90 x 5 x 12|
= € 594
|CHF 9.00 x 5 x 12 |
= CHF 540 + CHF 60 fee
= CHF 600
|8,000 CHF * 1,2% |
= CHF 96
|Example calculation |
50,000 CHF / EUR Assets
|€ 9.90 x 5 x 12|
= € 594
|CHF 9,00 x 5 x 12|
= CHF 540+ CHF 60 fee
= CHF 600
|50,000 CHF * 1,0% |
= CHF 500
Comparing fees in detail is difficult because there are many variables: Investment duration, price gain, stock purchase vs. ETF savings plan, assets. With an active portfolio, I only pay the order fee once, no matter how long I hold the share or how much value gain it generates.
My Yova Strategy
I have deposited 2,000 Swiss Francs (approx. 1,900 Euro) as initial investment and transfer 500 Swiss Francs monthly by standing order.
According to Yova, 30 – 40 different stocks should be held in my portfolio over the long term.
After one year I will compare the performance of my actively managed portfolio with my Yova portfolio and then decide whether to increase my monthly investment in Yova.
SAXO Trader Account
Yova is the “investment manager” but not a bank. That’s why you will get a trader account with SAXO bank. Your actual stocks and bonds are held on the SAXO trader account.
To invest with Yova you don’t need to care about this at all. Usually you will just see your Yova Dashboard. I am curious and asked to get direct access to my SAXO trader account. Here is a screenshot from my account where you can see which stocks I are “behind” my Yova investment strategy.
My Yova Performance Update
Yova Performance Update as of December 22, 2020
From April 2020 to December 2020, I have invested CHF 5,500 with Yova. Currently, I have a return of 42.4%, which is CHF 1’703.
Obviously, that sounds nearly too good to be true but 2020 has been crazy in many ways. A lot of stocks gained a lot since March 2020. I think Yova is working well for me so far and I am be happy to invest more in the future.
Sign up here for Yova and use my referral code 59385* if you want to invest in impact companies and save 6 months of Yova fees.
*I asked Yova, if they have an affiliate program because I love their product and mission. This is an affiliate link that adds no cost for you. Yova pays me a small commission if you sign up via my link. I only recommend products I really enjoy in my reviews.