ESG & Sustainable Investments for Pension Funds


10 May 2018
London – Le Meridien Piccadilly Hotel



ESG & Sustainable Investments for Pension Funds

08.45    :    Registration and Coffee


09.15    :    Welcome & Opening Remarks


TrevorTrevor Cook, Managing Director, Specialist Pension Services





09.25   :      Session 1:  Meeting your Fiduciary Responsibilities & Non-Financial Risks 


Clive Gilchrist Moderator: Clive Gilchrist, Deputy Chairman, BESTrustees





Mike FoxMike Fox, Head of Sustainable Investments, Royal London Asset Management


The Sustainable way to meet your Fiduciary Responsibilities 

In this session we look at why sustainable investing is becoming an essential element in pension investment strategies.  We will explain how building sustainable analysis into an investment approach can produce multi-asset, equity and fixed income portfolios with better long-term risk and return characteristics and help trustees to meet their regulatory and fiduciary obligations more effectively. 



Ian Simmlan Simm, Founder and Chief Executive, Impax Asset Management


Non-financial risks - what should investors consider?  

An holistic approach to risk - what do we mean by non-financial risks? Where should ESG fit in the investment process? How should investors think about carbon risk? Considerations as we transition to a more sustainable global economy. 



10.40     :    Coffee/Tea



11.10     :    Session 2: Beyond ESG & Global Equities


Sean BurnardModerator: Sean Burnard, Independent Trustee, Law Debenture Pension Trust





Robert de GuigneRobert De GuignéHead of ESG Solutions, Lombard Odier Investment Managers


Rethink Sustainable Investing

Capital markets can play an important role in adding pressure on companies to improve their business practices.  To do this effectively, we need to look beyond simple ESG metrics to identify which companies are just talking the talk, and which are achieving real change. This gives us a much deeper understanding of true sustainability and allows investors to use their capital to create a positive indirect impact. This session will look at why investors need to focus their capital on companies that are the real agents of change, how to differentiate between the talkers, the doers and the achievers, and what role the capital allocation process can play in pushing for change.



Florian SommerFlorian SommerSenior Strategist & Head of Sustainability Research, Union Investment


Innovative, Forward-Looking, Growth-Oriented: Why Sustainable Investments can lead to Greater Returns 

Currently, the world economy is moving on a steady growth path. Consequentially, the prospects for the corporate sector remain bright: For the first time in many years, international companies were able to increase their profits considerably in 2017. Therefore the stock market rally is no longer only a result of higher valuations, but is also supported by robust earnings. Chances are high that this trend will continue for the time being as economic data indicates. For investors, the inclusion of sustainability criteria in the investment process can play an important role not only for responsibility, but also for investment opportunity reasons. Through the decisive assessment of ecological, social and corporate governance criteria (ESG criteria), the result of global equity investments can be improved in the long run. 



12.25    :     Drinks and Lunch


13.35    :     Session 3: ESG in Practice 



Michael DeakinModerator: Michael Deakin, Independent Trustee






Adrian JonesAdrian Jones, Portfolio Manager Infrastructure Debt - Allianz Global Investors


Rules of 'Engagement:' effective vs perceived action in infrastructure debt

As "sustainability" becomes a core requirement for investors there is a danger that a 'box-checking' culture develops. A clear strategy focuses finite ESG engagement capacity in those areas where ESG risk is greatest, but also where the potential positive impact of marginal sustainable investment is highest. Without an efficient strategic risk assessment framework, production of large volumes of low-value data and inconsequential commentary about inherently low-ESG-risk investment can occur.  This adds unnecessary costs to investment management ultimately borne by investors.  In particular much ESG work presumes equity investment has a high degree of investor influence.  An investor must recognise that while shareholders appoint the board and approve corporate actions, debt instruments are largely passive - with the exception of specialist areas such as project finance. 



Jonathan BaileyJonathan Bailey, Managing Director, Head of ESG Investing, Neuberger Berman


The Bondholders Dilemma - how to get Credit Insights from an ESG industry built around Shareholders

In this session we will look at the practical steps that fixed income investors can take to integrate ESG factors into their investment processes, including the ins-and-outs of ESG data and third party ratings, what to expect from engagement, the role of the credit rating agencies, and the increasing focus on impact.



14.50         Coffee/Tea


15.10          Session 4: Practical Session & Pension Fund Insights


Mike Clark

Moderator: Mike Clark, Founder & Director, Ario Advisory





Catherine Howarth

Catherine Howarth, Chief Executive, ShareAction (Fairshare Educational Foundation)


Putting it all Together




A panel of pension scheme executives will talk about their pension fund's investment strategies and experiences and where ESG fits in their investment process. Panelists to include: 



Jennifer AndersonJennifer Anderson, Investment Manager, TPT Retirement Solutions





Adam MatthewsAdam Matthews, Head of Engagement, Church Commissioners for England





Michael Marshall Michael Marshall, Director of Responsible Investment, LGPS Central








16.20    :    Drinks Reception & Close of Conference


Pension Funds can no longer afford to ignore ESG or sustainability. This conference therefore aims to help pension funds to consider ways of integrating these into everyday investment management and to explore whether doing so will improve or reduce investment performance.  We will examine a range of strategies taking into account the risks associated with different investment approaches and practical implementation issues.


The conference is by invitation only for pension funds and other institutional investors. If you are not already receiving an invitation please contact us. A limited number of Complimentary invitations are usually available to genuine pension fund representatives (executives and trustees) and other approved institutional investors. However, to ensure we have room for as many funds as possible, we have to limit free places to 2 attendees per approved organisation thereafter a reduced rate fee is payable per delegate. Furthermore, SPS always reserves the right of admission (free or paid) and our decision is final.


Le Meridien Piccadilly Hotel, London

21 Piccadilly

London W1 0BH

Hotel Tel: 08700 400 8400

Hotel Fax: 020 7437 3574


The hotel is located on the north side of Piccadilly, close to Piccadilly Circus, only two minutes walk from Piccadilly Circus underground station.



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