This Week’s People Moves: Moola Shifts to New Sustainability Role at Ninety One

ESG Investor’s weekly round-up of new hires in the sustainable investing sector, including Ninety One, Chronos Sustainability, Gresham House, Martin Currie and TMF Group.

South Africa-based global asset manager Ninety One has appointed Nazmeera Moola as Chief Sustainability Officer. In this new role, Moola will be responsible for overseeing Ninety One’s sustainability initiatives, which will include investment integration, advocacy, corporate transition to net zero and efforts to mobilise funding for an inclusive net zero transition. Previously, Moola was Head of South African Investments at Ninety One. Moola joined Ninety One in 2013 from Macquarie First South, where she was Head of Macroeconomic Strategy. She began her career as an economist at Merrill Lynch in South Africa and London. Moola is a member of the South African Presidential State-Owned Enterprises Council, and a trustee of the Constitutionalism Fund. “We are committed to the goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and believe that the best way to achieve this is through an inclusive transition,” said Hendrik du Toit, Founder and CEO of Ninety One. “We cannot pretend that decarbonising portfolios is the same as decarbonising the world and want to ensure that no one is left behind, including emerging markets. Finance has a vital role to play in transitioning the real economy to net zero. Moola has been at the forefront of our firm’s initiatives in this area. In her role, she will oversee Ninety One’s investment integration, the development of our transition frameworks, commercial opportunities, and policy engagement.”

UK-based sustainability solutions and consulting provider Chronos Sustainability made two new hires for its international team. Jessica Doten Axberg joins as Manager of Food Research, while independent aviation and climate expert Rhoda Byrne has joined Chronos’ global consultancy network as Specialist of Aviation Climate Policy. Chronos said the roles show the demand for research across the sustainability spectrum, particularly for aviation and climate change, and food and agriculture. Doten Axberg is an agronomist with a focus on environmental sustainability, agricultural sustainability, and animal welfare. She has managed food, agriculture, and animal welfare programmes for a range of NGOs, research institutions and UN organisations, working with smallholder farmers, research institutes and government bodies. Based in Nairobi, Kenya, she will support Chronos’ global agri-food and sustainability programmes. Byrne is a consultant in climate and sustainable finance, with a focus on climate policy in the context of aviation and aerospace. She has led or contributed to programmes designed to accelerate investor engagement on climate change risks, including as a technical adviser to the Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI) and lead author on Climate Action 100+’s inaugural sector strategy on aviation. Based in London as an independent associate, she will consult on climate policy and aviation to Chronos’ climate benchmarking and investor engagement programmes. “COP26 has reaffirmed that some of the biggest interventions needed to respond to climate change – to reduce emissions and respond to physical climate change – are inextricably linked to the decisions made by companies in the areas of agriculture, energy and transport,” said Dr Rory Sullivan, CEO of Chronos Sustainability. “These are areas where our ability to support investors, governments, companies and civil society organisations can help to accelerate change.”

Specialist alternative asset manager Gresham House has appointed Jonathan Walker and Rosie French to its sustainable investment team. They join as Sustainable Investment Managers and will report to Director of Sustainable Investment Rebecca Craddock-Taylor. The role of the sustainable investment team is to embed practices across the business in line with the sustainable investment framework. Walker has six years’ industry experience and before joining Gresham House worked at Morgan Stanley, most recently as a Research Analyst within the sustainability research team. His areas of focus included cross-sector sustainability research and European sustainable finance regulation, as well as working with the firm’s institutional clients on incorporating ESG into their investment processes. French also has six years of experience in the industry and joins from Aberdeen Standard Investments, where she was an ESG Analyst for the European Equities team. She was responsible for leading the team’s ESG analysis, corporate engagement activities and the integration of ESG into investment processes. Gresham House launched its first Sustainable Investment Report in 2021, as well as establishing the Group’s Sustainable Investing Committee, chaired by Craddock-Taylor.

Aimee Truesdale has joined Martin Currie as a portfolio manager for the firm’s global emerging markets team, effective from 1 December, 2021. Martin Currie is a specialist investment management division of Franklin Templeton. As a portfolio manager, Truesdale will support Martin Currie’s emerging market strategy. The strategy manages assets of £5.2 billion (US$7 billion). Truesdale was most recently an assistant fund manager and equities analyst at Jupiter Asset Management, where she worked on the firm’s Indian equities strategy and conducted research and analysis on emerging markets equities. Part of her role involved collaborating with Jupiter’s stewardship team to oversee ESG issues at investee companies. “Truesdale brings analytic experience to the team as well as a grounding in emerging markets,” said Alastair Reynolds, Martin Currie’s portfolio manager for global emerging markets. “She will be a valuable addition to the team, and we look forward to bringing her on board.”

TMF Group has hired Flavia Micilotta as Director of ESG solutions. Micilotta will join the Dutch-based consultancy firm with nearly 20 years of experience in sustainability and working to incorporate ESG considerations into financial activities. Prior to joining TMF Group, she led the sustainability practice at Deloitte in Luxembourg. Before that, she was Director of the Luxembourg Green Exchange. As a member of the High-Level Expert Group on Sustainable Finance (HLEG), Micilotta worked with policymakers on defining the basis for the Sustainable Finance Action Plan in 2018. She was an Executive Director of Eurosif, the pan-European sustainable and responsible investment organisation. She has also worked with regulators such as the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group, European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EI, and the European Commission. She will now report to Andrew O’Shea, Global Head of Fund Services. “We are delighted to welcome Micilotta to the team to lead this area of our business,” said O’Shea. “Her expertise will enable us to evolve our ESG offering and support our client base in this space.”

The practical information hub for asset owners looking to invest successfully and sustainably for the long term. As best practice evolves, we will share the news, insights and data to guide asset owners on their individual journey to ESG integration.

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