Fund Solutions

This Week’s Fund News: BlackRock, LGIM, Vontobel, Premier Miton And More

ESG Investor’s weekly round-up of news about funds designed to meet sustainable investing criteria.

BlackRock has partnered with Singaporean investment company Temasek to launch a series of late-stage venture capital and early growth private equity investment funds that will advance decarbonisation solutions. Decarbonisation Partners have committed a combined US$600 million to ultimately accelerate global efforts to achieve a net zero economy by 2050, with a further fundraising target of US$1 billion for their first fund. “Bold, aggressive actions are needed to make the global net zero ambition a reality. Decarbonization Partners represents one of several steps we are taking to follow through on our commitment to halve the emissions1 from our portfolio by 2030, and ultimately move to net zero emissions by 2050,” said Dilhan Pillay, Chief Executive Officer of Temasek International. Last week, BlackRock also launched its US$1.25 billion BlackRock US Carbon Transition Readiness ETF (LCTU), the biggest ETF to be launched in history, according to Bloomberg. The fund will focus on investing in Russell 1000 companies well-positioned for the energy transition.

Legal and General Investment Management (LGIM) has launched a range of three Quality Equity Dividend ETFs, offering investors access to equity income with quality screening and responsible exclusions. Listed on the London Stock Exchange, the L&G Quality Equity Dividends ESG Exclusions UK UCITS ETF, L&G Quality Equity Dividends ESG Exclusions Europe ex-UK UCITS ETF and L&G Quality Equity Dividends ESG Exclusions Asia Pacific ex-Japan UCITS ETF will track FTSE Russell indices and invest in corporates that don’t present significant ESG risks. “We apply a rigorous series of quantitative screens to select stocks based on their quality metrics, dividend characteristics and ESG profile. We look to identify those quality companies that can sustain a consistent dividend and thus believe that this fund range is a powerful proposition for investors seeking to address their search for income, desire for growth potential and an increasing awareness of ESG risks,” said Howie Li, Head of ETFs at LGIM.

Vontobel has launched a green bond fund in order to meet investor demand for income derived from sustainable approaches. The Vontobel Fund – Green Bond, which qualifies as an Article 9 fund under SFDR, invests in the global universe of green bonds with proceeds funnelled into eligible environmental projects enabling a transition to a low-carbon economy. “Climate change is a real financial risk for investors, and green bonds provide an effective tool to address it. The fund’s impact is also measurable. For every €1 million invested in the fund, we estimate that we reduce carbon emissions equivalent to 492 m/t of CO2, or around 206 fewer passenger cars on the streets per year,” said Daniel Karnaus, Portfolio Manager at Vontobel.

Mackenzie Investments has launched the Mackenzie Greenchip Global Balanced fund and Mackenzie Global Sustainable Bond fund, expanding its selection of sustainable solutions. The Mackenzie Greenchip Global Balanced fund is a Canadian green fund for retail investors, investing in the environmental economy. The Mackenzie Global Sustainable Bond fund aims to meet investors’ demand for sustainable fixed income solutions. “More and more Canadians are looking for investment solutions that aim to deliver both performance and societal and environmental benefits. We’re committed to addressing this growing demand. The funds are designed to meet the sustainable investment needs of Canadian investors and advisors, while providing long-term risk adjusted returns,” said Fate Saghir, Senior Vice President and Head of Sustainable Investing at Mackenzie Investments.

Premier Miton will launch its Premier Miton European Sustainable Leaders fund on May 10 2021. The fund will be managed by the European equities team and led by Premier Miton’s Head of European Equities Carlos Moreno. It will invest in European companies that exhibit signs of long-term sustainable growth across themes such as clean energy and healthcare. “The launch of a new sustainable and ESG-focused European equity fund further expands our range of ESG and responsible investing products to cater for growing investor demand in this area. The Premier Miton European Sustainable Leaders fund will sit alongside our global equity sustainable growth and income funds, our ethical UK equity fund and our global renewable energy investment trust,” said Neil Birrell, Premier Miton’s CIO.

CPR Asset Management, the thematic equities arm of asset manager Amundi, has expanded its range of climate change investment solutions with the launch of two funds. The Climate Action Euro is an open-ended Eurozone equity fund and the Climate Bonds Euro is a Euro-denominated open-ended bond fund. The funds will use CDP’s scoring methodology to identify corporates across a variety of sectors committed to mitigating climate-related risks. This follows an initial partnership with CDP in 2018 to launch the Climate Action International Equity fund. CPR AM’s climate range now has more than €1 billion in AUM. “These funds are a direct response to investors’ demands to decarbonise their portfolios and consolidate the range of solutions that CPR AM is able to offer them across all main asset classes,” said Gilles Cutaya, Deputy CEO of CPR AM.

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