ESG & Sustainable Investments for Pension Funds
08.45 : Registration and Coffee
09.15 : Welcome & Opening Remarks
Trevor Cook, Managing Director, Specialist Pension Services
09.25 : Session 1: Meeting your Fiduciary Responsibilities & Non-Financial Risks
Moderator: Clive Gilchrist, Deputy Chairman, BESTrustees
Mike 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.
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
Moderator: Sean Burnard, Independent Trustee, Law Debenture Pension Trust
Robert De Guigné, Head 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 Sommer, Senior 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
Moderator: Michael Deakin, Independent Trustee
Adrian 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 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.
15.10 Session 4: Practical Session & Pension Fund Insights
Moderator: Mike Clark, Founder & Director, Ario Advisory
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 Anderson, Investment Manager, TPT Retirement Solutions
Adam Matthews, Head of Engagement, Church Commissioners for England
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.
June 7, 2018 The Westbury, Dublin
June 14, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London
July 12, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London
August 30, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London
September 13, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London
September 20, 2018 Apollo Hotel, Amsterdam
October 2, 2018 7A Strandvägen, Stockholm
October 11, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London
November 8, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London
November 15, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London
November 22, 2018 V&A Marriott, Manchester
December 11, 2018 Le Meridien Piccadilly, London