Sycomore Asset Management, the €8bn French manager, has launched a balanced fund focused on companies with business models deemed compatible with sustainable growth objectives.
The fund adds to the existing suite of products that already hold the French government-supported SRI label: Sycomore Sélection Responsable, Sycomore Sélection Crédit, Sycomore [email protected], Sycomore Eco Solutions and Sycomore Shared Growth.
The latest strategy is fuelled by what the manager sees is a need to respond to a shortage of natural resources and their over-consumption, among other challenges.
Alexandre Taïeb, co-manager of the fund, added that other changes being wrought included new production methods leading to new consumption patterns, and the rethinking of recruitment processes due to robotics.
Taïeb, along with co-manager Stanislas de Bailliencourt, are looking to companies able to "contribute positively to the well-being of future generations: businesses that improve living standards (Better Life), players operating in green energy, climate or biodiversity-related industries (Better Environment), and companies that pay particular attention to their workers' happiness (Better Workplace)."
The strategy is capable of running 0-50% equity and 0-100% bonds.
Sycomore has set up a proprietary methodology for rating quantitative and qualitative criteria, where "ESG considerations play a dominant role".
Emmanuel de Sinety, co-manager of the fund, said: "Consistent with our transparency code, we have committed to excluding the 32 countries that are not members of the United Nations Global Compact are automatically excluded. The fund will also refuse to invest in countries displaying an overall rating that is not higher than 2/5, based on 5 key pillars: 1/sustainable development, 2/governance/political system, 3/economic health, 4/corruption & human rights and 5/ social inclusion/equality."
The fund will also prioritise equity and corporate debt holdings according to how underlying companies are aligning their products and services with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and with long-term ESG indicators.