Impax Asset Management has launched the Global Social Leaders Strategy, aiming for long-term capital growth by investing in companies with strong corporate cultures aligned with social trends.
The strategy focuses on “long-term, secular, social trends” such as ageing populations, increased chronic diseases, emerging market income growth, urbanisation and the transformative impact of technology on financial markets.
The co-managers of the strategy, Charles French, deputy chief investment officer, and Amber Fairbanks, portfolio manager, shared that they employ a framework evaluating indicators of a strong corporate culture, such as low employee turnover, gender-diverse leadership and inclusive business practices. To be included in the portfolio, stocks must pass through a 10-step analysis comprising ESG research.
The product – using the MSCI All Country World Index for comparison – is currently available in the US as a mutual fund in institutional class and Investor Class.
Awaiting approval from the Central Bank of Ireland, its European introduction will fall under Article 9 per the EU’s Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation, accessible in EUR, GBP, NOK, CHF and USD.
Article 9 funds are investment options that contribute to positive societal or environmental impact through sustainable investments, with a primary focus on non-financial objectives.
Amber Fairbanks, portfolio manager, Impax Asset Management, said: “Although the market typically ignores culture for more easily understood metrics, strong culture can drive earnings growth through innovation, increased productivity, better relationships with suppliers and customers, and higher employee retention.”
Charles French, deputy chief investment officer, Impax Asset Management, added: “By investing in the products and services that will be positively affected by long-term trends shaping society, we continue to identify opportunities in the transition to a more sustainable economy.”
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