Industry

This Week’s People Moves: Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures Joint Chairs Unveiled

ESG Investor’s weekly round-up of new hires in the sustainable investing sector including TNFD, IFRS Foundation, Ninety One, American Century, Redington, 2° Investing Initiative.

Elizabeth Maruma Mrema and David Craig have been unveiled as the co-chairs of the newly-formed Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD). Mrema was appointed Executive Secretary of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity in 2020, while Craig is CEO at Refinitiv and Group Leader for Data and Analytics at the London Stock Exchange Group. The TNFD aims to consult with a variety of stakeholders to develop and build on voluntary, consistent disclosures to help corporates, investors, lenders and insurance underwriters manage nature-related risks, such as new legal liabilities and systemic loss of soil fertility. The Taskforce will consist of approximately 30 members, with an equal representation of financial institutions, corporates and data/service providers from developed and emerging markets. Its proposed framework for nature-related risks will complement the work of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) to give companies and financial institutions a complete picture of their environmental risks. “Delivering on the ambitions for the TNFD will require significant and complex work, but we are optimistic that we can deliver a practical and impactful framework by 2023, which can ultimately support a shift in global financial flows away from nature-negative outcomes and towards nature-positive outcomes,” the co-chairs said in a joint statement.

The trustees of the global accounting body International Financial Reporting Standards Foundation are seeking nominations for the roles of Chair and Vice-Chair of a proposed new International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB), with a closing date for nominations of 30 June. The Board, subject to the trustees’ approval, will be charged with developing global sustainability reporting standards for disclosures in corporate reports. The call for nominations is the latest step in the preparatory work to establish the board before the November 2021 United Nations COP26 climate conference in the UK. Both roles will be full-time positions on a 14-member board. The Chair’s role is described as a “senior, highly visible and impactful global public interest appointment, demanding leadership skills, a strong understanding and interest in the wider context of sustainability reporting, commercial and practical awareness, political sensitivity and judgement and also a high level of stakeholder engagement and influencing skill”. The Vice-Chair will support the Chair in his/her role, and lead the ISSB’s work on technical standard-setting issues and developments.

Anglo-South African global investment manager with £130.9 billion AUM Ninety One has expanded its Thematic Equity team within Multi-Asset with the appointment of Stephanie Niven as Portfolio Manager. With 16 years of industry experience, she will lead the investment manager’s development of a global sustainable equity offering. Niven joins the firm from Aviva Investors, where she co-managed the Global Equity Endurance Fund. Prior to that she was a global equity portfolio manager at Tesco Pension Investments. She began her career at Goldman Sachs. “The broadening of our global sustainable equity offering will be another milestone in Ninety One’s drive to put sustainability at the core of our business. Stephanie shares our vision for developing the firm’s sustainable investing capabilities, and her sustainable investing philosophy is absolutely aligned to ours,” said Mimi Ferrini, Co-Chief Investment Officer. 

American Century Investments, a US$230 billion global investment manager, has announced the heads of two newly created sustainability groups. Matt Oldroyd has been named Head of Corporate Sustainability. He will work with the firm’s human resources, legal, distribution and marketing, and facilities teams in concert with the diversity, equity and inclusion committee, sustainable investment council and ESG and investment stewardship team. Patricia Ribeiro becomes Chair of the newly formed sustainable investment council. She will lead a select group of portfolio managers who represent all the firm’s investment disciplines. The council provides a platform to feed client insights back into the investment organisation to accelerate the teams’ progress in sustainable investing.

UK-based Investment consultancy Redington has created two roles that further the firm’s commitment to align default client investment advice with the goal of reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Paul Lee is the consultancy’s new Head of Stewardship & Sustainable Investment Strategy. Previously an independent consultant, he will work with Redington’s Investment Strategy Committee to help set the firm’s sustainable investment strategy. Between 2015-2018 he was Head of Corporate Governance – Stewardship at Aberdeen Asset Management. Anastasia Guha has been appointed Global Head of Sustainable Investments. She joins from the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, where she was the Director for Northern Europe & Middle East and Africa. At Redington, she will lead the firm’s global sustainability strategy, integrating this across different business channels.

Independent, non-profit think tank 2° Investing Initiative has established an expert-led advisory group to advise on a new multi-stakeholder governance approach for its Paris Agreement Capital Transition Assessment (PACTA) climate scenario analysis and alignment methodology. The group will have 14 members and five observers and will be chaired by Michel van den Berg, Principal at Green Mountain Climate Consultancy. 2DII said it is keen to address key governance, operational, and conceptual questions in collaboration with a diverse array of climate finance specialists, as PACTA’s community of users and capacities expands. The group’s main mission will be to propose a long-term governance framework, which in turn will help ensure the methodology’s scientific integrity and independence; promote co-ownership of the open-source methodology; and contribute to the harmonization of the growing number of climate alignment concepts and methodological choices.

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