As the asset manager within the German co-operative financial services network, responsibility has been an integral part of the way we carry out our business since our foundation in 1956. We launched our first portfolio formally incorporating sustainability criteria in 1990 and our Assets under Management in sustainable portfolios have grown to over EUR 53 bn since then, making us one of the largest sustainable asset managers in Europe.
We see it as our duty to play an active role in the transition to a more sustainable economy and society which includes the preservation of our natural resources. Furthermore, we firmly believe that sustainability goes hand in hand with economic value added over the long-term.
Accordingly, we take ESG risks and opportunities into account alongside financial parameters throughout all of our investment processes and encourage companies to take a responsible approach to business in the context of our engagement dialogues.
Due to the complexity of sustainable investment, our ESG incorporation entails a thorough analysis of available data and information performed jointly by our fundamental portfolio managers and our 15 dedicated ESG analysts with the help of our proprietary ESG research tool SIRIS (“Sustainable Investment Research and Information System”).
Our approach to responsible investment is guided by leading national and international standards, in particular the UN Global Compact, the UN Principles of Responsible Investment (PRI) and the German Investment Fund Association (BVI)’s Code of Conduct.
We generally do not invest in companies involved in the manufacture of outlawed weapons or coal mining. Furthermore, we may exclude issuers from our investment universe if, for example, an issuer is in serious breach of the UN Global Compact.
Beyond these ESG principles, we honour the individual ethical beliefs of our clients and therefore offer ESG strategies customised to their requirements.
Last but not least, we have incorporated sustainability into the way we carry out our own business.
Visit www.union-investment.com/sustainable_investments for more information including ESG videos.