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Axa IM launches Article 9 biodiversity fund

cactusAxa Investment Managers (Axa IM) has launched a biodiversity fund that invests in best-in-class companies providing solutions to address land and water pollution, land degradation, fauna and flora protection, and overconsumption.

The Paris-based firm has rolled out the Axa WF ACT Biodiversity fund, which is available to institutional and retail investors across Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK.

Axa IM has targeted four areas of investment which contribute to the preservation of biodiversity, including sustainable materials, land and animal preservation, water ecosystems, and recycling and reduction.

The fund will harness the firm’s listed active equity investment process, and bottom-up stock selection, as well as ESG exclusions and sectoral exclusions spanning weapons and tobacco producers and controversial weapons, deforestation, and climate risks, respectively.

Its proprietary impact framework will analyse companies, focusing particularly on their products and services.

It is designed to have a positive impact across UN SDGs 6, 12, 14 and 15, and is classified as an Article 9 fund under the EU Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR).

Amanda O’Toole, manager of the strategy, said: “Our planet’s biodiversity is being lost at an alarming rate, threatening the planet’s future, and human economic activity is the main driver.”

O’Toole is also the lead portfolio manager of the Axa ACT Clean Economy Strategy.

“There is growing recognition that there are economic and human costs associated with biodiversity loss – over time these negative externalities will crystalise as economic costs for companies. Axa IM’s biodiversity strategy identifies and invests in companies that contribute to ecosystem preservation and restoration through their products and services,” she added.

As part of the impact fund range, 5% of the management fees paid to the fund will be donated to organisations aimed at developing solutions with a tangible societal impact, Axa IM said.

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