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Octopus Targets Alternative Assets with New Hire

Impact specialist Octopus Investments has appointed Lieven Debruyne as Executive Vice Chair, in a move to raise money for alternative asset classes. Debruyne, who joins the firm from Boston Consulting Group, previously spent more than 20 years at British asset manager Schroders. He will be tasked with building an investment platform to raise capital from global institutional investors, which will go into asset classes such as venture capital, sustainable infrastructure, renewable energy, real estate, healthcare and smaller listed companies. Octopus Investments, part of the Octopus Group, manages £13.5 billion (US$17.3 billion) on behalf of institutional investors, and hopes to increase that to £50 billion. Seventy percent of the funds should go to investments that address climate change, tackle inequality, and improve people’s quality of life. Debruyne said he had “long been impressed by how Octopus has helped shape solutions that aim to tackle some of society’s biggest challenges”. He added: “Through its investment strategies and portfolio of group companies, Octopus is in a truly unique position to drive innovation. It can deliver the investment propositions pension funds, insurers, corporates and wealth managers over the world are looking to increasingly allocate capital to.” Simon Rogerson, Co-founder and CEO of Octopus, said the new investment platform was directed at institutional investors who “believe their money can be a force for good, investing across three themes: empowering people, revitalising healthcare and building a sustainable planet”.

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