We were the only asset manager to score an AA rating out of 77 global firms assessed by the UK-based research firm. It is the second time in a row that Robeco has been ranked in first place in the annual ShareAction survey of asset managers across sustainable investing themes.
ShareAction gave ratings on five core sustainability capabilities – governance, stewardship, climate, biodiversity and social – after participants answered more than 100 questions on how they handled these issues. Ratings ranging from AA to E were then given, based on the results.
While no one scored a AAA rating, Robeco was unique in getting AA, while only three other firms out of the 77 assessed – BNP Paribas Asset Management, Aviva Investors and Legal & General Investment Management – received an A score.
The leaderboard for the 2023 survey. Source: ShareAction
Two-thirds of asset managers received a CCC rating or worse, indicating serious gaps in their sustainable investment policies, ShareAction said. As part of the report, the group also lays out specific recommendations for asset managers, asset owners and policymakers to try to improve their scoring.
Climate and biodiversity strategies
How asset managers were dealing with climate action and protecting biodiversity were particular focus points of interest. In 2022, Robeco launched investment products for Net Zero 2050 Climate Equities and Biodiversity Equities, as well as making enhancements to existing climate and SDG-based strategies.
The survey also questioned how investment firms were addressing social issues such as labor rights and public health, and how well their governance and stewardship practices embedded sustainability at the heart of the business. As a pioneer of sustainable investing, Robeco has had an Active Ownership team since 2005 and has routinely integrated environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into the investment process since 2010.
“The ShareAction Global Responsible Investment Benchmark is important within our industry,” says Carola Van Lamoen, Head of Sustainable Investing at Robeco. “Ranking number one is a great recognition we can be proud of, and many colleagues contributed to this success. Continuously raising the bar on sustainable investing is definitely a team effort of colleagues across the organization.’’
ShareAction has produced research on asset managers and asset owners since 2007. The primary aim of its work is to create a valuable public resource that allows diverse stakeholders to see how effective the largest institutional investors are when it comes to sustainable investment.
In addition to the yearly voting assessment, ShareAction also manages the Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP) which publishes a yearly ranking of the world’s 75 largest asset managers according to their sustainable investment practices, with a specific focus on governance, climate change, human and labor rights, and biodiversity.Read the full report here