This podcast features Leaders focusing on Sustainable & Impact Investment and Performance with Purpose, supporting the companies that are solving the world’s biggest challenges.
Hosted by JP Dallmann, it shares their stories, messages and advice to increase awareness about impact leadership, investment and performance with purpose.
Impact Leaders is brought to you by ILA & Partners and Fast Forward 2030.
Visit http://fastforward2030.com to learn how to include the Global Goals into your business models, and ILAandPartners.com (https://ilaandpartners.com/) for advice on how to transition into Sustainable & Impact Investing.
Lars Meisinger & Alex Lenz of Aquila Capital: Creating Sustainable Real Asset Solutions with Smart Capital
Aquila Group is a leading investment manager in real asset solutions.
Its sustainable investment strategy focuses on investments in renewable energy, energy efficiency, infrastructure, residential real estate, green logistics as well as timber and agriculture.
Founded in 2001 by Dieter Rentsch and Roman Rosslenbroich as one of the first German alternative investment firms, Aquila Group currently manages EUR 11.2 billion for institutional investors worldwide (as of 31/03/2020).
Lars Meisinger is Head of Aquila Capital’s international client advisory and corporate development. Prior to joining Aquila Capital in 2016, Lars was responsible for strategic product development at UBS Asset Management. He previously served as Chief Operating Officer at BlackRock Alternative Investors for the EMEA region. His long professional experience includes eight years in management roles at Man Group and senior positions at AXA Investment Managers in both London and Frankfurt. Lars holds a master's degree in economics from Maastricht University and a bachelor's degree from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Frankfurt. He is a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA).
Alexander Lenz was recently appointed CEO Asia Pacific at Aquila Capita. He is based in Singapore and has worked in the renewable energy sector since 2007.
Prior to joining Aquila Group in 2020, Alexander was the CEO of Conergy where he focused on development and investment in solar PV assets, both utility scale and behind-the-meter C&I, across the Asia Pacific region. Previously, when Conergy was part of a global group, Alexander was the CEO & President APAC, responsible for the group’s business in Asia Pacific and the Middle East, with a focus on project development, turnkey EPC contracting, and O&M of utility scale solar PV assets in the region.
Before moving to Asia, HE was Head of Corporate Development in Conergy’s headquarters in Hamburg. Alexander was previously a consultant in the Restructuring and Corporate Finance practice of Roland Berger Strategy Consultants in Berlin and in the management consulting practice of Deloitte in Duesseldorf. He holds a master’s degree in Economics from Maastricht University, in The Netherlands.
Our business focuses on real assets or essential assets, renewable energy, real estate, timber and agriculture.
"We are moving the goalposts away from ESG steadily to impact in the future, where it's not only about compliance with environmental aspects, social and governance aspects."
"... one of the very few independent investment managers in Germany, and in operation for 20 years, is in my view, a strong indication of the vision that the two founders set out Roman and Dieter."
“We want to bring to the table smart capital, as opposed to passive capital that is abundantly existing, but doesn't really get to the point.”
There is an interest in investing in Asia.
More institutional investors in the region are interested in increasing exposure to renewable energy and sustainable investments.
We support by not just creating our own renewable energy offering but by helping create a broader universe of offering for renewable energy that benefits everyone.
The renewable energy market is constantly changing you need to stay ahead, stay intellectually curious and have the ambition to analayse the market and create sound investment decisions.
[06:36] What is sustainable and impact investing?
[09:19] What does Aquila Capital do?
[15:59] What makes Aquila different
[19:13] Exploring new markets in APAC
[19:44] Future plans and vision for Aquila Capital in APAC
[23:00] Investment fund between APAC and Europe
[25:09] Aquila model in managing relationship with stakeholders
[26:27] Reasons to list Aquila Fund in the London Stock Exchange
[28:43] Advices to beginners about ESG and un
Ben Constable Maxwell of M&G Investments: Redesigning Capitalism With Purpose
Ben Constable-Maxwell is Head of Sustainable and Impact Investing at M&G Investments, leading the strategy on impact investing as well as covering sustainability issues such as climate change and the circular economy.
He has been central to the development of ESG integration within M&G’s investment processes and has supported the development of ESG solutions for clients across asset classes.
Ben plays an active industry role as a member of various sustainable and impact investment initiatives, interacting with companies, policymakers, NGOs and other investors. He is a Trustee at Firefly International youth organisation, which provides educational and mental health support for young people in conflict-affected areas in the Balkans and Middle East.
Previous to joining M&G in 2003, Ben spent four years with the Equities team at Invesco Perpetual.
He has an honours degree in Classics from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
“We have a responsibility to integrate ESG across our suite of investments and asset classes”
If you think about the the issues that drive performance, the issues that really can cause major blow ups, often they're ESG related.
Data breach, oil spills, falling faul to a major diversity and inclusion related scandal are all things that can hit the reputation and bottom line of consumers. We just think you have to take into account all these risk whether ESG funds or not, right across all $350B assets.
“We have a suite of ESG funds that covers different asset classes. Over the last 10 years, in particular the past 4-5 years, the ESG integration programs across M&G started in equities and fixed income, but is now broadening out to all asset classes on behalf of clients. All of them now say they embrace and integrate and ESG approach.”
We have to and our clients wants specifically designed funds with clearly articulated ESG integration programmes
Impact financing fund - Private debt investments in liquid debts investments that have a net positive impact such as social housing, energy efficiency and green buildings, renewable energy infrastructures
ESG needs to be managed and communicated just as how the risk function has evolved over the past 10-15 years. There is expectation from clients that ESG is an important part of the process.
It’s not just the ESG team, it has to come from the leadership.
Companies are not just seeing this as a leadership issue, they are seeing this as a survival issue.
Shifting from competitive, moated competitive advantage thinking to a open-minded, supportive, collaborative approach.
Mindset shift in healthcare sector with Covid - the role is not just to protect your IP and generate super normal returns but to provide healthcare and save lives.
M&G Triple “I” framework: Investment, Intentionality, Impact.
Investment: sustainable business models, good company, long-term.
Intention comes from purpose, clarity of purpose and authenticity.
Examples of KPIs - Millions of tons of greenhouse gas saved, avoidance of virgin material and use of virgin forest. Millions of trees saved, millions of people accessing financial services in underserved communities.
Move from a shareholder primacy perspective to a stakeholder responsibility perspective.
A company should genuinely be thinking about its responsibilities to all stakeholders and future generations.
Impact adjusted accounting approach - we need a new accounting system for the 21st century.
Collaboration is at an all time high, to navigate the complexity of changes and behaviours we need.
[03:00] What is sustainable and impact investing?
[05:00] What does M&G do?
[10:00] ESG issues and integration programs
[12:00] Positive impact fund
[15:00] ESG as an ongoing process
[20:00] Evolution of risk functions and ESG
[22:00] Internal asset owner and leadership e
The Sustainable Investment Dilemma - Amy Clarke, Troy Mortimer & JP Dallmann
On today’s episode we are doing something different: we are sharing with you a session that I called “The Sustainable Investment Dilemma”, a conversation I hosted as part of The CogXtra weekly event series, covering in this opportunity the subject of “Sustainable Business – How Industry is addressing the Climate Crisis”. In our case, the financial industry.
As my co-panellist I brought together two guests:
Amy Clarke, who is Co-Founder & Chief Impact Officer of Tribe Impact Capital, and
Troy Mortimer, who is Responsible Investment and ESG Advisor at ILA & Partners.
If you did not know them already, I highly recommend that you also listen to the individuals episodes we recorded previously. You can also read her Bios at the end of these notes.
As part of the event I also shared a short Video introduction to the recently launched film “Our Planet: Too Big To Fail”, which is a 42-minute film that explores the risks of inaction, the impact of investing-as-usual, and the role the finance sector can play powering a sustainable future. I wanted to bring this to your attention to ask you to watch it and share it, so we can all take proactive actions! You can watch the video on ILA & Partners’ website - Media section: http://bit.ly/ILAmediaV
I also thought this is relevant to set the tone ahead of our conversation, but most importantly, I wanted to shine the light on one of the best tools we have to create awareness and understand how interconnected the industry is to every part of society and the world at large.
Please note that we had a couple of technical challenges that were all resolved during the first few minutes, but I wanted to make sure you had access to this valuable content. Enjoy !
“If we can create a much healthier relationship with our wealth, and the purpose of our wealth, then actually we should be able to fix, repair, increase resilience, and ultimately regenerate the relationships with each other and with nature.” Amy Clarke
50th anniversary of Milton Friedman's seminal essay that was penned and then printed in the New York Times Magazine
“there is a real sense that the values and belief systems upon which we have built this global finance system aren't right, they're not fit, they're not robust.”
There is the rise of the BCorp movement and the use of BLab tools during the lockdown has risen exponentially.
“Impact investing is about helping wealth holders reconnect with the purpose of their wealth. The word wealth comes from two old English 13th century old English words, meaning well being, we've lost the well being and wealth along the way. And it's become singularly focused on financial performance.” Amy Clarke
“I see this as a behavioral inertia challenge. Financial institutions are comprised of individuals, we need to look at how we incentivise these individuals, how we are rewarding them and how we associate value with their actions.” Troy Mortimer
We can transition not all but a lot of companies through to becoming a force for good.
“We need a just transition, quickly and effectively where finance, regulation and policy play a role. We need a carrot and a stick.” Troy Mortimer
How do we move beyond (Only) preaching to the converted?
The later we leave it, the steeper the transition is going to be - Mark Carney
The more we pushback regulation deadlines, the more uncertainty it creates. Ultimately, its better to takes the operational learnings in Covid and behaviour change and apply it to compliance and regulation.
Bernard Looney, CEO of BP, a different style of leadership. Moving away into a more human style of leadership.
We need to use AI to help change behaviours in the right direction.
Passive ESG funds should be able to demonstrate intent.
Its important to populate the empirical evidence and convince the skeptics of the econom
Saker Nusseibeh CBE of Federated Hermes: Being Good Is Good Business
MR Saker Nusseibeh, CBE is CEO of the international business of Federated Hermes, appointed November 2011, having joined in June 2009 as CIO. He is also a member of the Federated Hermes Executive team.
Prior to this, Saker was Global Head of Equities at Fortis Investments, having previously been CIO Global Equities since 2005. Before this, he was CIO of Global Equities and Head of Marketing for SGAM UK. This followed SGAM’s acquisition of Trust Company of the West, where Saker was a Managing Director running global and international strategies, as well the London office. He started his career at Mercury Asset Management in 1987.
Saker is founder of the 300 Club and was an inaugural member of the CFA Institute’s Future of Finance Advisory Council from 2013 until 2019. He is a member of the IIRC Council, the FCA-PRA Climate Financial Risk Forum, the United Nations Environmental Programme Financial Initiative Steering Committee, the Banking Standards Board, the UK National Advisory Board on Impact Investing, and the advisory Board of the National Youth Orchestra.
In 2018, Saker was named CEO of the Year at the Financial News Asset Management Europe Awards. He has a BA and PhD in Medieval History from King's College, University of London.
Saker was awarded a CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen’s 2019 New Year's Honours list for services to Responsible Business and Finance.
Enjoy this epidose!
Being good is good business.
Beating benchmarks and creating a pot at the end of a period just heuristics. These are just shorthand.
We don't live in an isolated bubble called the financial world. We live in the real world, in real communities with real neighbours in the real space.
In reality, we control most of the capital markets in the world, so we have the ability to shape the world in a way that is beneficial to us.
The reason you invest is you want to grow the economy that you want to live in. Every investment you make has an impact on your life, not just on your portfolio but on your life.
Challenge -> Misunderstanding Adam Smith - the moral philosopher: “happiness, perhaps the preservation of his existence again, all right, his contentment, happiness here means contentment, the preservation of his existence, his very life depends upon what its preservation preserving what the prosperity of society“.
COVID has generated the debate. What is it that we as a developed society care about? We should care about the life of all citizens including citizens who are not economically productive - that’s what pensioners are in harsh economic terms. Do we care about citizens’ lives or do we care about pure financial economic growth?
We have a shared assumption, the shared assumption that we have is that it's possible in the financial sector to combine being really technically excellent at what you do, while at the same time being truly a decent human being. We call it being nice.
We are privileged because of how much we get paid and where we are, therefore we should reach out to help those around us.
It’s about how much giving of your time and how much do you empathise.
We see ourselves as the pebble that maybe can help start the avalanche that can change the market for better. I think we are part of that movement. The key is to make change for the better.
It’s not what we do, its who we are. Who we are then produces what we do. But you start with the human first, not the product.
High active share managers, even the ones that are not skilled outperform benchmark and everybody else after fees from that position.
People use the word alpha. I don't like the word alpha, its value.
We pay half of our bonuses on “being nice”.
We invented the idea of engagement. Doing stewardship is a better way of enhancing value over the long-term.
I'm absolutely convinced that t
Yuni Choi of RS Group: The Role of Family Offices In Sustainable Investing
Yuni Choi focuses on the investment portfolio of RS Group. She has 14 years of investment experience across public and private equities and in multi-asset portfolio management. Before joining RS Group, Yuni was Vice President at TAU Investment, an impact-driven private equity firm investing in the apparel supply chain.
Prior to TAU, she worked as a Senior Investment Analyst at Mirae Asset Global Investments, focusing on fundamental analysis and investment in Asian public equities. She is also an angel investor and has advised a dozen social entrepreneurs over five years. A native of South Korea, Yuni earned her MBA from Columbia Business School and also holds a BA in Business Administration from Yonsei University. She received her CFA charter in 2011.
The stages the RS Group - Single family office has gone through and the lessons learned
Total Portfolio Investing and Bended Value
Investing in Sustainalytics in 2009 in order to support the mainstream ESG investing community
Focus on natural capital and nature based solutions and launching of a design funding window with Convergence Finance.
“Its really important to understand the team. We see a lot of ESG funds, with the bigger asset management firms they have very shiny presentations that are very well organised but in the end what gives us the real insights is talking to the managers and understanding how they implement the ESG framework. The magic is really getting to know them”
We believe closely monitoring and engaging managers is also our duty as a responsible investor.
“One of the fundamental challenges is that positive and negative externalities are not fully priced in. This means coal miners or harmful oil and gas exploration projects can still access funding at a rate not too different from green projects.”
When ecosystem services are properly valued, companies will not be able to justify damaging natural resources to increase their profit, such as producing palm oil from cleared lands or overfishing or use of unsustainable fishing methods.
“We sincerely hope that sustainable investing does not remain as one type of investing but becomes the only way of investing.”
Many investors still think that moving their capital to ESG ETFs is enough, but in our opinion, while ESG ETFs are better than traditional ETFs, they are not the best solutions. There is no active company engagement, no fundamental ESG research investors who need to understand ESG label itself is not enough. They need to move their capital into strategies that have a really robust ESG integration.
We want to see more asset managers, more banks actually investing in the ESG talents in the region.
[03:00] What is impact investing?
[06:00] What is RS Group
[13:56] Examples of investments made
[19:15] Importance of meeting the team
[24:10] Investing in multi-asset classes
[33:50] Importance of engaging with fund managers
[34:00] Challenges of impact investing
[40:10] Every family office is different
[43:10] A particular challenge in the Asia region
[45:30] Yuni’s career path and mentors
[46:00] Working in an all women team
[49:30] What makes an impact leader?
RS Group http://www.rsgroup.asia/
Yuni Choi https://www.linkedin.com/in/yunichoi/
Annie Chen https://www.linkedin.com/in/annie-chen-71819b51/
Annie Chen’s case study on the Coutts Bank philanthropy website http://philanthropy.coutts.com/en/reports/2013/hong-kong/case-studies/rs-group.html
Jed Emerson https://www.linkedin.com/in/jedemerson
RS Group’s report http://report.rsgroup.asia/
Mark Campanale’s podcast episode https://bit.ly/ILMCPT
Florian Kemmerich at Bamboo Capital podcast episode https://bit.ly/ILFKBCP
Seb Below - Wheb IM podcast episode https://bit.ly/ILSBWHEB
SJF Ventures https://sjfventures.com/
Mark Campanale - Sustainability, Planetary Boundaries, and Changing Capitalism
Mark Campanale is an award winning Sustainable Investment expert, the Founder & Executive Director of the Carbon Tracker Initiative and conceived the ‘unburnable carbon’ capital markets thesis. He has twenty-five years experience in sustainable financial markets working for major institutional asset management companies.
Please listen to the episode to be inspired beyond any boundaries and read the “More about Mark Campanale” section at the end of these notes to learn more about his outstanding career and contribution to the financial markets and our society at large.
How can we change financial Markets for good?
“There is an old saying: How do you change capitalism? You need to take control of the capital.”
Mark’s (career) evolution and path to founding Carbon Tracker:
Going to The University of York
Crossing the Sahara Desert
Becoming an analyst assessing projects for Live Aid
Working on the first fairtrade coffee in Tanzania in1988
Pioneering green finance alongside Tessa Tennant founder of Merlin Ecology Fund
Being one of the first “green analyst” in the City of London
Investing in the first renewable energy business
Knowing what you don’t like: Stop the city protest
Inspiring women leaders in the industry
How global warming motivated Mark to find solutions through the world of finance.
Xtrata’s IPO and the lack of sustainable impact information on their documentation.
The long list of supporters, advocates and funders of this movement
“In the same way that Bill McKibben with the divestment movement managed to change everything, Mark Carney carried this message into the world of financial markets regulation has changed everything.”
Re-thinking the purpose of finance: The future of the planet, the security of the financial system and pension schemes.
Paris Climate agreement: Investors are absolutely aligned with a safe outcome.
The analysis of ecological boundaries and its financial impact
“Four or five hedge funds are now shorting the fossil fuel industry and going long on the clean economy. I think we are going to see a lot more of that in the future.”
“Everyone that has sold out of the fossil fuels sector or shorted it in from 10 years ago has done extremely well, both on a relative and absolute basis … but we need a forceful intervention”.
Using Satellites and AI to help cut carbon emissions: Transparency is a crucial element of accountability.
Trying to alert the world of an urgent challenge
[01:14] Who is Mark Campanale - An introduction to his Bio
[05:25] What is sustainable and impact investing? Intention and boundaries?
[08:03] What ignited Mark’s passion in sustainable finance?
[17:50] Background 10 years story of how Carbon Tracker started and materialised - including funding
[24:00] Wasted Capital and Stranded Assets: coining the phrase together with Unburnable Carbon
[26:00] Ideas are a cursed and the purpose of markets
[28:00] Working with investors and educating the market, including Pension Trustees
[31:00] Bill McKibben, Mark Carney, and their impact
[34:00] The role of the private sector: investors, shareholder, fiduciary duties and pension funds
[36:00] The network of initiatives linking into Planet Tracker and measuring the impact on Ecological boundaries
[40:00] Supply chain: Fish stock as natural capital, deforestation, agriculture and meat production
[42:00] Climate Action 100 and its $46trn coalition and the change on valuations
[45:00] The need for a forceful intervention to close the Fossil Fuels sector
[46:00] The role of firms such as Share Action and Litigation Funds
[48:00] Using AI to create transparency and accountability on Carbon Emissions reporting
[49:20] What impresses Mark about Impact Leaders
[52:00] Call to action
Mark Campanale - https://www.linkedin.com/in/mark-campanale-18862
Customer ReviewsSee All
Focus on impact
I was specifically looking for impact investing podcasts and glad I found this one.
The quality of speakers is very high and the style of interviewing allows listeners to get a technical understanding of the subject matter, but also an insight into the personal motivations of why they do what they do. In addition, it appears a lot of work goes into the production of each show judging by the detail of each of the show notes.
Great questions and interviewees
I am energised to follow and make an impact. Nice job..