This Week’s People Moves: HSBC AM Hires ‘Climatech’ Team

ESG Investor’s weekly round-up of new hires in the sustainable investing sector, including HSBC AM, Manulife, Arabesque, GSAM and Zadig. 

HSBC Asset Management has appointed a new Climate Technology (Climatech) team in order to expand its direct investment capabilities in alternatives. With over 16 years of experience in investment banking, private equity and energy contracts, Christophe Defert has been appointed Head of Climate Technology Venture Investments. Michael D’Aurizio has joined as Investment Director of Climate Technology. Reporting to Remi Bourrette, HSBC’s Head of Venture and Growth Investments, the Climatech team aims to develop a venture capital investment strategy which will invest in technology start-ups addressing climate change across sectors such as energy, transportation, agriculture and supply chain. The first fund adopting this strategy will be launched before the end of the year. “Technology will play a major role in enabling the energy transition, funded by public money, private capital and philanthropic commitments like HSBC’s Climate Solutions Partnership with the World Resources Institute and WWF. The appointment of this team will allow us to provide clients with early exposure to sectors which are just emerging as such, but will become major sources of financial and environmental value over the decade,” said Joanna Munro, Global CIO at HSBC Asset Management.

Manulife Investment Management has expanded its impact investing and natural climate solutions team, appointing Eric Cooperström as Managing Director. In the newly created role, Cooperström will be responsible for enhancing Manulife’s responsible investing capabilities, working closely with its timberland and agriculture teams to develop an investment thesis for clients interested in impact-first investments. Prior to his appointment, Cooperström was a Senior Director at NatureVest, the impact investment arm of The Nature Conservancy. Cooperström will report to Brian Kernohan, Chief Sustainability Officer for Private Markets at Manulife Investment Management. “We believe forests and farms are natural climate solutions, and we see removing carbon from the atmosphere and storing it in trees and soils as a viable option for investors who are looking to optimise and prioritise carbon sequestration,” Kernohan said.

Arabesque has appointed three senior independent advisors to bolster the company’s efforts to combine AI-driven technology and data with finance to deliver sustainable financial solutions to global markets. Former Co-CEO of Deutsche Bank Jürgen Fitschen has joined the Arabesque S-Rayboard. Head of Alternative Risk Premia at GAM Systemic Dr Lars Jaeger and COO and Chairman of Technology at Allianz Dr Cristof Mascher have joined the Senior Advisor Committee of Arabesque AI. “Arabesque is on a path to help transform finance and industry by the intelligent application of market-leading sustainability know-how and innovative technology. It’s an approach based on the understanding that ESG and AI will re-shape the global marketplace over the next decade,” said Georg Kell, Chairman of the Arabesque Group and founding Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact.

Jen Sisson has been appointed as Head of Stewardship, EMEA, at Goldman Sachs Asset Management (GSAM). Sisson will be officially joining the firm in June 2021, reporting to Catherine Winner, Global Head of Stewardship at Goldman Sachs Asset Management. The GSAM global stewardship team aims to promote direct engagement with company management on ESG-related issues, with Sisson taking over responsibility for this across EMEA. She joins from the UK’s Financial Reporting Council (FRC), where she was most recently the Deputy Director of Stakeholder Engagement and Corporate Affairs.

Zadig Asset Management has announced the appointment of Luc Pez as Co-Fund Manager of the OYSTER Sustainable Europe fund, alongside Louis Larère. Pez will be investing in sectors usually avoided by responsible investors, such as mining and energy. He has more than 20 years of experience, previously founding and working as Managing Director of Rare Earth Advisory. “The appointment of Pez as sustainability specialist within a generalist research team at Zadig Asset Management shows our commitment to developing and strengthening our SRI offering going forward. Pez’s skills will be helpful in further improving the Sustainability profile of the fund by researching and investing in sustainable companies in industries such as basic resources, chemicals, and energy producers that are often excluded by SRI managers,” said Pierre Philippon, Director of Zadig Asset Management.


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