We have announced the successful launch of our £1 billion Global Sustainable Equities Active Fund with four local authority Partners investing at launch.
The fund consists of three themed sub-funds covering broad, thematic and targeted funds that will be managed by Mirova, Liontrust and Baillie Gifford respectively. Managers were selected on their merit and their alignment to fund themes. Scoring was based on an extensive range of metrics and qualitive information stretching across sustainable investing, financial performance, operational management and firm culture. The fund will be benchmarked against the FTSE All World Index.
Initial investors from launch are Cheshire, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire Pension Funds.
LGPS Central Chief Investment Officer, Gordon Ross, said ‘This asset class was highlighted as a priority for Partner Funds following respective reviews of their investment strategies. The team here at LGPS Central then worked in collaboration with our Partner Funds to determine the mandates that formed the basis of the Fund, aiming to reflect the varying risk and return targets required’.
He added, ‘We are continuing to develop our product offering to provide suitable choice to our valued Partner Funds. In the spirit of Pooling our aim is to offer high performing, cost effective investment vehicles in line with their varying strategies and this fund launch represents a very positive addition to our offer’.
The aim of the fund is to bring together a suitable mix of diverse managers to invest in only the most sustainable businesses, with the expectation that it will deliver suitable return over the longer term as the world transitions to a lower carbon economy.
Quotes From Managers – welcome to be used by media
Mirova – Jens Peers, CEO & CIO, Mirova US
‘In an ongoing effort to encourage greater investor engagement with strategies focused on sustainability, we are delighted to partner with LGPS Central. At Mirova we are well aware that investors are aligning their beliefs with their investment outcomes, increasingly allocating capital to sustainable investment solutions. We look forward to working with LGPS Central to deliver Mirova’s innovative investment capabilities and proven track record built over the last decade, to their Partner Funds and transitioning to a more sustainable global economy’.
Liontrust – Peter Michaelis, Head of Sustainable Investment, Liontrust Asset Management
‘Liontrust is excited to be managing the long-term savings for the Partner Funds of LGPS Central through our 21-year-old Sustainable Future investment process. It is vital that underlying members not only have the financial wealth but also a healthy world and society in which to enjoy their retirement. Our investment process seeks to help to achieve this by investing in companies that contribute to creating a cleaner, safer, and healthier world and generate attractive returns for investors through identifying the key structural growth trends that will shape the sustainable economy of the future. We are delighted that LGPS Central has given us the opportunity to provide its Partner Funds with access to this process at a time when there is growing demand for sustainable investment as an increasing number of people want their investments to make positive contributions to society, the environment, and the economy.’
Baillie Gifford – Chris Murphy, Head of LGPS at Baillie Gifford
Baillie Gifford is delighted that our Positive Change Strategy is available to the Partner Funds of LGPS Central. We look forward to helping deliver attractive long-term returns and positive change by contributing towards a more sustainable and inclusive world.
Investing Pension Fund quotes – welcome to be used by media
Cheshire Penson Fund– Cllr Myles Hogg
‘The Cheshire Pension Fund has had a long-standing commitment to invest in sustainable companies; this is because we believe forward looking companies will play a major role in solving the world’s sustainability problems, and in doing so, generate strong financial returns for our members.
We are therefore delighted to commit £360m to the new LGPS Central Global Sustainable Equity fund.
The investment will enable the Cheshire Pension Fund to make faster progress against our commitment to transition to net zero carbon emissions, across all of our investment portfolio. It will also accelerate our plans to decarbonise our equity portfolio, while at the same time protecting financial returns. We know that climate change is an issue of increasing concern for our members and this new investment is yet another demonstration of our commitment to tackling the issue, in order to protect our investment portfolio from climate change risk’.
Nottinghamshire Penson Fund – Councillor Eric Kerry, Chairman of the Nottinghamshire Pension Fund Committee
‘I’m delighted that our pension fund is taking part in this new and exciting global sustainable equities fund. We’re ambitious for this fund and have earmarked an initial £320m to be used as part of its investments.
‘This continues our strategy to invest in sustainable companies with a long-term future. Nottinghamshire Pension Fund actively looks for investments which can be expected to benefit as a result of the long-term impacts of climate change and other sustainability challenges, and we believe this fund will deliver on this objective.
‘Fund managers are seeking to invest in companies that contribute to creating a cleaner, healthier and more inclusive world and generate attractive returns through identifying the key structural growth trends that will shape the sustainable economy of the future.
‘Our pension fund already has already done significant work in this vital area by producing a climate strategy, taking part in a climate risk analysis, and investing more in clean energy infrastructure’.
Shropshire Pension Fund – Cllr Thomas Biggins, Chairman of Shropshire Pensions Committee
‘The Shropshire County Pension Fund has done a significant amount of work over the last 18 months on climate change and this investment continues to show our commitment to reduce carbon emissions within our equity portfolios. We are therefore delighted to commit £120m to the new LGPS Central Global Sustainable Equity fund.
The investment will enable the Shropshire County Pension Fund to continue with our commitment to transition to net zero carbon emissions across all of our investment portfolio. It is also another strong commitment to accelerate our plans to decarbonise our equity portfolios, while at the same time protecting financial returns. We know that climate change is an issue of increasing importance for our members and this new investment is yet another demonstration of our commitment to tackling the issue, in order to protect our investment portfolio from climate change risk’.
Worcestershire Penson Fund
Please contact Worcestershire Pension Fund directly for comment.