Influencers

The principals of Afinishay have worked closely with pension funds and other Institutional investors for over twenty years and, throughout this time, we have listened carefully to their evolving needs and objectives.

Foremost among these is to invest in opportunities that have superior risk-adjusted return profiles and provide effective portfolio diversification.

Afinishay sources niche, and often difficult-to-access, investment strategies, with experienced management teams and compelling business models, that match each investor’s principal investment criteria.

As a matter of course, Afinishay only represents managers who offer investors:
  • Better aligned compensation models that reward success
  • Stronger governance with increased investor oversight
  • Decision-making guided by ESG & SRI considerations
  • Potential to make a positive economic and social impact 
We advise managers on structuring and then make targeted introductions to institutional investors actively seeking to invest in such strategies. A two-step process that first makes a strategy investable and then provides the capital needed to transform a business.

To ensure that our interests are equally aligned with all parties, Afinishay is always compensated by the manager and primarily by compensation tied to the success of the strategy.

Allia Impact Finance helps charities and social enterprises raise loan finance by connecting with investors through listed and unlisted bonds. It is part of Allia, an independent not for profit with a social mission, dedicated to helping impact organisations and initiatives to grow. Allia has been issuing bonds for social benefit since 1999.

Our Retail Charity Bonds platform provides mainstream impact investing opportunities for retail and institutional investors, including pension funds, through bonds that are listed in the UK and traded on London Stock Exchange. At November 2017, nearly £160m has been raised for charities through 7 bond issues.

Amundi has been a signatory of the PRI since 2006 and responsible investment has become one of the pillars of our development strategy. Dedicated governance, internal resources, active involvement in collaborative initiatives and an AFNOR certified SRI approach are just some of the ways we strive to advance the field of responsible investment.

A team of 20 specialists ensures ESG analysis of more than 5,000 issuers, conducts an active engagement policy, and promotes these topics amongst investors and collective initiatives.

In addition, almost 60 experts (corporate governance, quantitative research, SRI managers and products specialists) are mobilised around environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.

We are convinced that consideration of ESG criteria, combined with an ongoing dialogue with issuers, consolidates financial performance. Our commitment is reflected, in particular, by the integration of ESG factors across its management strategies.

Our ESG analysis, which relies on the expertise of 8 extra-financial data providers and an internal rating tool, covers more than 5,000 issuers. The analysis results in a global extra-financial rating for the issuer on a scale from A (highest score) to G (lowest score).

AXA Investment Managers (AXA IM) is an active, long-term, global, multi-asset investor. We work with our clients today to provide the solutions they need to help secure a better tomorrow for their investments, while creating a positive change for the world in which we all live.

With fundamental research at the core of our process, our investment professionals seek out and develop the most efficient and robust sources of alpha across world markets, marrying innovation and risk management in a bid to deliver long-term, value for clients.

AXA IM has a long history of innovation and, as a part of the broader AXA group, we are attuned to thinking long term about both risk and return. This combination makes us adept at mitigating tomorrow’s challenges and taking advantage of the opportunities that accompany them.

As stewards of our clients’ assets, our primary goal is to help them preserve and grow their wealth. We believe that an important part of achieving this is investing responsibly. This is why we incorporate environmental, social and governance considerations into our investment decisions and offer clients a full spectrum of responsible and impact investing tools.

Over two decades, we have become one of the largest asset managers in Europe, entrusted with £646 billion (€735bn) in assets as of 30 June 2017. Our 2,400 staff serve over 5,000 clients in 62 countries around the world.

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Baillie Gifford is an independent investment management partnership founded in 1908. Over a century’s experience of investing in broadly the same manner means our firm is well suited to identifying unique businesses that can provide long term sustainable growth and make a positive impact on society.

As such, an impact investing team, Positive Change, was established. The team invest in exceptional companies that address societal challenges, rather than screening out inferior ones. These societal challenges include the lack of basic infrastructures and services, resource constraints and degradation, rising inequality, and persistent poverty. The team believe that companies focused on solving these challenges should see rising demand for their products and services and are naturally growth companies. By concentrating on a subset of companies that enjoy sustainable competitive advantages and are run by committed management teams, the Positive Change  team believe that investors should be able to achieve attractive investment returns over the long term while contributing towards a more sustainable and inclusive world for future generations.

Patience and perseverance are required to invest sustainably. Positive change is delivered over years not months, so an ability to look beyond next quarter’s earnings release for operational growth and positive societal impact is essential.

Big Society Capital’s aim is to improve the lives of people in the UK by connecting investment to charities and social enterprises that are creating social change. We do this by bringing together our investment capital, our expertise and our network of partners. To date, we have helped establish £1bn of social investment vehicles alongside co-investors.

Bridges Fund Management (formerly Bridges Ventures) is a specialist fund manager focused exclusively on sustainable and impact investment, with offices in London, New York and San Francisco. Since 2002, the firm has raised over £900m to invest in SMEs, properties and social sector organisations that are helping to tackle some of society’s biggest challenges, with a focus on four themes: health & wellbeing, education & skills, sustainable living and underserved markets.

Brightlight provides bespoke investment consulting and management services to institutional clients across the private, philanthropic and government sectors, bringing together a team of leading impact and responsible investment professionals, experienced across multiple asset classes, geographies and impact sectors.

Brightlight Group currently operates two arms of business. The first, Brightlight Impact Advisory, provides training, strategic advice, research and asset consulting services. The second, Brightlight Investment Management, collaboratively structures, builds and manages impact investment products to bridge the gap between client demand and supply of institutional grade impact investments.

A leading global asset management group, Columbia Threadneedle Investments provides a range of actively managed investment strategies and solutions for individuals, pension funds and corporations. We manage $495BN / £366BN in AUM and have a presence in over 18 markets globally. We strive to deliver the investment outcomes that our clients expect when they trust us with their money, through an investment approach that is team-based, performance-driven and risk-aware. We have an established, dedicated and well-resourced responsible investment team, providing investment solutions that allow our clients to invest according to their values and to achieve social outcomes. Our award winning social investment funds take a balanced approach to achieve social outcomes, financial return and liquidity. *

*AUM includes the combined assets under management of the Columbia and Threadneedle group of companies as at 31 December 2017. Source: Ameriprise Financial.

Eaton Vance is a leading global asset manager with a strong commitment to responsible investing.

A signatory to the UN Principles for Responsible Investing (UN PRI), Eaton Vance has an uncompromising commitment to integrity and excellence. The firm seeks to provide investors with consistent performance, top-quality service and value-added strategies across a range of investment disciplines. In managing client portfolios, the firm adheres to established investment disciplines and balances the pursuit of return with the careful management of portfolio risk.

In 2016, Eaton Vance acquired the assets of the impact-investing firm Calvert Investment Management to form a new investment subsidiary: Calvert Research and Management (“Calvert”).

A recognised leader in responsible investing, Calvert is one of the founding signatories of the UN PRI. Calvert also helped to launch the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and last year helped found the SASB Alliance, which seeks to standardise disclosure for responsible investing.

Calvert seeks superior investment performance through integrated ESG research with an emphasis on company engagement and rigorous measurement of non-financial factors to demonstrate positive global environmental and societal impact. It provides measurable and reportable impact metrics on many of the portfolios it manages.

“Impact reporting” has been made possible by the development of a range of metrics in areas such as green tech, human rights, greenhouse gas intensity and water stress aimed at quantifying how business activity affects the environment, society and corporate governance.

Today, Calvert is one of the largest and most diversified managers of responsible investments across actively and passively managed equity, fixed income and asset allocation strategies.

At Finance for Sustainability, we work on big ideas that connect new forms of investment to social issues in the UK. We do this by working in partnership with others to identify gaps in the provision of finance and creating new funds, private investment products or seeding new advisory firms to work on solving the complex social and environmental issues others are afraid to work on. Finance for Sustainability is a not-for-profit, every penny we make in profits is reinvested in the Group, both expanding and strengthening existing operations or launching and seeding new ventures. Our Group Companies are either ‘not-for-profit’ or ‘for profit social sector’ businesses, meaning we have a mission lock and no less than 51% of profits are reinvested in that mission each and every year. Across the FFS Group we manage or advise on £43m of Social and Environmental Impact Funds, with more in the process of being created.

Our Group Companies:

Environmental Finance is a social enterprise that works across a wide variety of the conservation, natural and built asset sectors. Environmental Finance create, and partner with others who are creating innovative, investable projects. These projects are specifically structured to deliver quality returns for investors, local communities and the environment at large.

Sporting Assets is social enterprise that helps develop sustainable sports enterprises, by taking ownership of facilities, developing new ones and by helping to create or diversify revenue streams.

ArtsVentures is a social enterprise that helps develop sustainable and resilient arts enterprises, by supporting them to make the most of their assets.

GCM Grosvenor invests on behalf of clients who seek allocations to alternative investments, such as private equity, hedge funds, real estate and infrastructure. With approximately $50 billion in assets under management, we are one of the world’s largest and most diversified independent alternative asset management firms.

GCM Grosvenor is committed to responsible investment (RI) and to environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) issues across our alternative investment platform. We view ESG issues as key elements of investment return, volatility and risk mitigation, and believe the consideration of such issues is an important aspect of our fiduciary responsibility to our clients. We promote sustainable and responsible investing by incorporating key ESG considerations into our business management, investment analysis, due diligence and portfolio construction.

The Firm has RI policies in place and considers ESG issues in its investment process to the extent it believes such issues might be reasonably expected to have a material impact on investment performance. In connection with underlying fund investments, GCM Grosvenor’s investment due diligence typically includes a review of the Investment Manager’s RI policies and its implementation thereof, among other things. Furthermore, GCM Grosvenor periodically requests underlying managers to provide updated RI-related information.

Incorporated in 1857, Gresham House is an alternative asset manager providing funds, direct investments and tailored investment solutions including co-investment across a range of highly differentiated investment strategies which include strategic public and private equity, timber, renewable energy, housing and infrastructure. The highly experienced investment team is led by Chief Executive Tony Dalwood (ex-CEO of SVG Advisers (formerly Schroder Ventures (London) Limited).

Gresham House recently launched a new UK focused investment strategy that bridges the gap between investors’ investment goals and the need for longer-term investment into important, government supported UK sectors, namely housing and infrastructure, whilst aiming to deliver a positive ESG impact.

This investment approach provides investors with the ability to invest in social and infrastructure investment initiatives (the ‘building blocks’ for supporting UK economic activity) as well as renewable energy projects. The deal-by-deal co-investment structure will allow investors to increase their allocation to underlying community-based transactions or sections of specific interest so that they make a positive social impact whilst maintaining prudent financial control. One of the objectives is to “partner” with local authorities and local government pension schemes to fulfil both financial, social returns, and potentially to support local area objectives.

The strategy already has the backing of two Local Government Pension Schemes and is designed for institutional investors including local authority and corporate pension funds, endowments and family offices to fulfil both long-term financial and social returns whilst having a positive ESG impact.

Our strategy is part of a newly formed Long-Term Investment Solutions Platform, which was established to deploy long-term or ‘patient’ capital while providing an opportunity for co-investment.

The Hermes Impact Opportunities Strategy is a concentrated, fundamental global equity strategy with a bold philosophy: to generate value by investing in companies that create positive, sustainable change and strong long-term investment returns. By meeting the underserved needs of society and the environment, as captured by the UN SDGs, impactful businesses are directly exposed to sources of enduring demand – the beta of future growth.

Nesta Impact Investments (NII) is one of the leading impact investors in the UK and was set up in 2012 by Nesta, the innovation foundation which has played a pivotal role in the development of impact investment in the UK both through NII and through other organisations that we helped establish.

NII invests in high-growth, profit-with-purpose businesses, aiming to achieve a combination of evidenced positive social impact and attractive financial returns. We back early stage revenue-generating, innovative ventures creating scalable, financially sustainable, commercial products or services that are specifically designed to address social challenges for disadvantaged population groups in three thematic areas: education and employment, positive health and community sustainability. NII’s primary goal is to increase the scale, depth and sustainability of social impact of the businesses it backs whilst achieving market level financial returns. NII assesses social impact based on evidenced achievement of one or more social outcomes aligned to UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Pantheon is an established global private markets specialist with a 35 year history investing across private equity, infrastructure and real assets. We employ approximately 220 staff, 76 are investment professionals managing USD$37 billion* in funds under management across six offices globally.

Pantheon invests with integrity and professionalism. We are stewards of our clients’ capital and take this responsibility seriously. We care about how and where we allocate capital and believe Environmental, Social and Governance issues shouldn’t be an after-thought.

As a prominent and sizeable investor in private markets we are well positioned to make a difference and follow this through with active engagement across the GP community and industry trade associations. Beyond the maintenance of high ESG standards, Pantheon takes an active interest and invests in funds with a thematic approach that address the world’s challenges of population growth, environmental threats and shortage of resources.

We have a long history of engagement with the UNPRI having signed up in 2007. In the most recent assessment we scored an A+ rating for Strategy and Governance and an A rating for indirect Private Equity and Infrastructure manager selection, application and monitoring.  Our commitment to developing a thoughtful approach to ESG has never been stronger.

Using the UNPRI principles, Pantheon has developed an ESG framework as part of our approach to risk management. Key ESG considerations are integrated across our business at management level, and throughout, due diligence, portfolio construction and portfolio monitoring.

*As of September 30, 2017

Partners Group is a global private markets investment management firm with over EUR 57 billion (USD 66 billion) under management in private equity, private real estate, private infrastructure and private debt. Partners Group is headquartered in Zug, Switzerland and has a further 18 offices globally, employing over 1000 people.

Partners Group has a long-standing commitment to Responsible Investment, having been one of the first private markets asset managers to become a signatory of the UNPRI in 2008. Responsible Investment is also embedded within Partners Group’s core values, as written in the firm’s charter: “We manage assets with a long-term perspective to the benefit of individuals and societies worldwide. We aspire to be a role model in corporate responsibility and we continuously raise environmental, social and governance standards.”

Over the years, Partners Group has developed its own ESG Integration Methodology, which is applied to every investment opportunity and ensures material ESG factors are integrated throughout the investment cycle, from sourcing to diligence through to ownership, across all private markets asset classes.

Resonance builds and manages impact investment funds which seek to focus investment capital even more strongly on investments which have a defined and intentional positive impact on specific social issues – from financing the assets local communities need to remain resilient, to building the property portfolios which social sector organisations need to deliver their impact, to direct lending to growing businesses which are using a “social enterprise” approach to deliver both robust profits and intentional solutions to social issues.

We have 15 years’ track record in UK focused impact investment across a wide range of sectors, including a series of award winning, institutional grade property funds, and a team of over 30 professionals based across the country giving us reach and insight in the regions in which we invest.

Our unique approach to property investment is allowing us to build institutional grade funds with diversified residential portfolios at scale across the country, accessing under-served markets, reducing risks, and generating an attractive blend of yield and capital appreciation, whilst creating long term benefit to the society into which pensioners will retire.

Sustineri is a boutique advisory firm that provides insights and solutions to institutional investors and other stakeholders in a world that is advancing towards a low-carbon and sustainable future.

The global climate and energy transition is well underway. Driven by a powerful combination of climate policy action and the falling costs of clean energy technologies, this transition is accelerating and is taking place against a backdrop of increasing concern about rising global temperatures and the impacts of climate change. At the same time, sustainable investing and green finance has moved from niche to mainstream. The UN Sustainable Development Goals provide a framework for environmental and social policies as well as fundamental, thematic and impact-related investment opportunities across asset classes.

At Sustineri, we believe that the combination of these factors has urgent and wide-ranging implications (risk and opportunity) for policymakers, investors and all parts of the financial ecosystem. There is no more business as usual and this transition has to be financed.   

Sustineri’s mission is to help different actors in the investment value chain – working closely in partnership -  to build their knowledge of the transformation underway, and advise and implement on areas such as strategy, governance and stewardship, so that they can make more informed decisions. Sustineri’s partners, Shuen Chan, Richard Folland and Martina Macpherson, draw on their deep and long-standing expertise to develop impactful solutions to help their clients prepare for the global transition and for a sustainable future. 

Wellington Management is one of the largest independent investment management firms in the world and traces its history back to 1928. Our innovative investment solutions are built on rigorous, proprietary research and span nearly all sectors of the global securities markets. Our diverse investment teams work together to uncover new investment ideas with the aim of helping clients to achieve their long-term goals.

Our Global Impact approach invests in companies whose core products and services address the world's major social and environmental problems. We believe such an approach can both generate strong potential investment returns and help to improve the lives of people around the world.

Demand for solutions to these challenges is already strong and is expected to grow significantly in the coming decades. We see particular opportunities among publicly listed companies with innovative solutions addressing large and growing end-markets. In our view, this is an inefficient area of the market where dedicated active investors can potentially uncover attractive opportunities. Many of these companies are found “off-the-beaten track” and hence have the ability to also provide diversification across a broader portfolio.

We focus on 10 impact investment themes across the broad areas of life essentials, human empowerment and the environment. These themes align with most of the UN’s sustainable development goals. For each company in our universe, we develop key performance indicators to help us monitor their progress towards delivering impact solutions.

Given the nature of impact companies, their stocks may experience near-term volatility, and the investment approach may therefore be especially suitable for long-term investors.