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1929: Laying the Foundations

1929: Laying the Foundations

Just weeks after the Wall Street Crash, seven Rotterdam businessmen formed a syndicate to invest peoples’ savings and manage money collectively. They named it the Rotterdamsch Beleggings Consortium, later shortened to Robeco. They thought stocks had hit at a low point, but due to the Great Depression, they lost half their money in the first two years. However, they persevered, laying the foundations for the modern Robeco.

1930s: Creating a global reach

Robeco’s first director, Wim Rauwenhoff, attached great value to research, striving for a scientific approach to investing. The founders also believed in global reach, buying stocks in South America as early as 1930 and expanding into Europe and North America, before listing on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange in 1938.
Every investment strategy should be research-driven
Every investment strategy should be research-driven
Wim Rauwenhoff, Robeco's first director (from 1933 to 1960)
1940s: Emerging from war

1940s: Emerging from war

During World War II, more than half the portfolio was safely invested in the US, and between 1941 and 1946, Robeco’s assets almost doubled in size. The wartime period also saw Robeco further develop its scientific approach to investing, including a partnership with what became the world-leading Erasmus University in Rotterdam. This dedication to research eventually led to pioneering work in quantitative and sustainability investing.
1950s: Making investing accessible

1950s: Making investing accessible

The 1950s saw further innovation, led in 1953 by the introduction of a share-saving system that allowed people of more modest means to save up to buy Robeco shares, making investing more accessible within the Netherlands. The postwar period also saw steady expansion, and Robeco listed on its first foreign stock market, in Paris, in 1959.
1960s: Swinging ahead overseas

1960s: Swinging ahead overseas

In the ‘Swinging Sixties’, further overseas expansion continued with listings for Robeco on the stock markets in Brussels in 1960 and London in 1962, along with several other European financial centers. In 1963, Robeco became the first European company to enter the Japanese stock market. Two years later, a second investment company, Rolinco, was founded for investors more interested in capital growth than in taxable dividends.

1970s: From bonds to new businesses

Innovation and diversification continued apace, with the establishment of Rorento, Robeco’s first bond fund, as an antidote to the oil crisis which saw share values plummet in 1973. Diversification also took place in a different vein after the Ford Foundation asked Robeco to run part of its portfolio, marking the start of the institutional asset management activities which now account for roughly 50% of assets under management. The 1970s also saw a string of mergers in which Robeco took over many of its main rivals to become the largest fund provider in Europe. Geographical expansion also continued unabated, opening new offices in France, Luxembourg and Switzerland, and listing on stock markets in Hong Kong and Tokyo.
1980s: Turning turmoil into triumph

1980s: Turning turmoil into triumph

Robeco’s experience of the first great stock market crash came good when the second occurred in October 1987, when it had learned the lessons of history and developed a crash policy. Minimizing risk through diversification averted panic behavior and led to a milder downfall in assets values compared to that of the Dow Jones.
1990s: Enter quant and sustainability

1990s: Enter quant and sustainability

The 1990s was a key development period in which Robeco pioneered the use of quantitative and sustainability investing, eventually becoming a world leader in both fields. The first quant strategy was launched in 1994, followed by the first sustainable product, the ‘Groencertificaten’ (Green Certificates), created in conjunction with new parent company Rabobank in 1995. Robeco later launched the first sustainable equities fund in the Netherlands.

2000s: New millennium, new milestones

The new millennium brought its own milestones for Robeco Group, with the US initially the focus of expansion as Harbor Capital Advisors and Boston Partners Asset Management joined the growing family. By the early 21st century, total assets under management broke through the EUR 100 billion barrier. Meanwhile, international expansion continued as offices were opened in the Middle East, Europe and Asia, where a joint venture with Canara first tapped the vast Indian market. Robeco Group’s sustainability reach solidified with the purchase of Zurich-based Sustainable Asset Management, later rebranded as RobecoSAM, and the integration of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into Robeco’s investment processes.
2013: Robeco becomes part of ORIX

2013: Robeco becomes part of ORIX

Robeco Group began an exciting new chapter when the Japanese financial services group ORIX Corporation acquired 90.01% of the company from Rabobank in 2013, and the remaining 9.99% of shares in 2016. The deal meant that Robeco became part of a bigger international company with a solid reputation. In 2018 Robeco Group was renamed ORIX Corporation Europe, the primary platform for expanding ORIX’s asset management business globally.
2019: fit for the future

2019: fit for the future

Now – 90 years after our foundation – Robeco is readier than ever for the future. With our strong research-driven focus, we remain committed to servicing professional clients across the globe through our unique integration of sustainable and quantitative investing, credits, emerging markets and trends. With our cautious pioneering approach always at the heart of things, we are fit for the coming decades.

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Important information

The Robeco Capital Growth Funds have not been registered under the United States Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, nor or the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended. None of the shares may be offered or sold, directly or indirectly in the United States or to any U.S. Person (within the meaning of Regulation S promulgated under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”)). Furthermore, Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. (Robeco) does not provide investment advisory services, or hold itself out as providing investment advisory services, in the United States or to any U.S. Person (within the meaning of Regulation S promulgated under the Securities Act).

This website is intended for use only by non-U.S. Persons outside of the United States (within the meaning of Regulation S promulgated under the Securities Act who are professional investors, or professional fiduciaries representing such non-U.S. Person investors. By clicking “I Agree” on our website disclaimer and accessing the information on this website, including any subdomain thereof, you are certifying and agreeing to the following: (i) you have read, understood and agree to this disclaimer, (ii) you have informed yourself of any applicable legal restrictions and represent that by accessing the information contained on this website, you are not in violation of, and will not be causing Robeco or any of its affiliated entities or issuers to violate, any applicable laws and, as a result, you are legally authorized to access such information on behalf of yourself and any underlying investment advisory client, (iii) you understand and acknowledge that certain information presented herein relates to securities that have not been registered under the Securities Act, and may be offered or sold only outside the United States and only to, or for the account or benefit of, non-U.S. Persons (within the meaning of Regulation S under the Securities Act), (iv) you are, or are a discretionary investment adviser representing, a non-U.S. Person (within the meaning of Regulation S under the Securities Act) located outside of the United States and (v) you are, or are a discretionary investment adviser representing, a professional non-retail investor. Access to this website has been limited so that it shall not constitute directed selling efforts (as defined in Regulation S under the Securities Act) in the United States and so that it shall not be deemed to constitute Robeco holding itself out generally to the public in the U.S. as an investment adviser. Nothing contained herein constitutes an offer to sell securities or solicitation of an offer to purchase any securities in any jurisdiction. We reserve the right to deny access to any visitor, including, but not limited to, those visitors with IP addresses residing in the United States.

This website has been carefully prepared by Robeco. The information contained in this publication is based upon sources of information believed to be reliable. Robeco is not answerable for the accuracy or completeness of the facts, opinions, expectations and results referred to therein. Whilst every care has been taken in the preparation of this website, we do not accept any responsibility for damage of any kind resulting from incorrect or incomplete information. This website is subject to change without notice. The value of the investments may fluctuate. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. If the currency in which the past performance is displayed differs from the currency of the country in which you reside, then you should be aware that due to exchange rate fluctuations the performance shown may increase or decrease if converted into your local currency. For investment professional use only. Not for use by the general public.

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