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Report: BNP Paribas Asset Management is a responsible investment leader

In its 2020 ‘Point of no returns’ report on 75 of the world’s leading asset managers in 17 countries, UK-based sustainable finance organisation ShareAction ranked BNP Paribas Asset Management (BNPP AM) in second place overall for its responsible investment strategy, underscoring BNPP AM’s achievements in sustainability practices and its industry leadership.

The report ranks asset managers according to their investment approaches across four themes: governance, climate change, biodiversity and human rights.

BNPP AM was one of only five asset managers to achieve an ‘A’ rating, denoting “strong management of risks and opportunities as well as impacts across multiple responsible investment themes.” More than half of the asset managers assessed – 50% of which are PRI signatories – fell into the bottom ‘D’ and ‘E’ categories. This includes the world’s six largest managers.

Recognition of Global Sustainability Strategy and ‘future maker’ role

Furthermore, BNPP AM was the only asset manager to score more than 75% for governance and biodiversity – testament to the effectiveness of its strong sustainable investment policies.

Responding to the news, Jane Ambachtsheer, Global Head of Sustainability at BNPP AM said: 

“We are very pleased to have achieved an ‘A’ rating and to be ranked second overall. This recognises the work undertaken since the launch of our Global Sustainability Strategy a year ago, a company-wide strategy that strengthens our role as ‘future maker’. This achievement resonates with the expectations of investors who are increasingly sensitive to the social and environmental impact of their investments.”

And BNPP AM has a responsible parent, too

Shortly after recognising the quality of BNPP AM’s responsible investment approach, on 26 April ShareAction released the results of its 2020 ‘Banking on a Low-Carbon Future’ report, which analyses how the 20 largest European banks are managing:

  • Climate-related risks assessment and management 
  • Low-carbon products and services 
  • Public policy engagement and collaboration with other players, and 
  • Governance, strategy and implementation. 

BNP Paribas earned the highest overall score of 63.2%, against an average of 39.9% for all banks studied, thus retaining the top position it established when the assessment was last made in 2017.

BNP Paribas excelled in two areas: its engagement and collaboration with stakeholders on climate-related issues, and the inclusion of climate-related issues within its governance and strategy.

Improving transparency and raising the bar

BNPP AM welcomes the scrutiny of such third parties in three ways.

First, it provides sustainability-minded investors with useful information to help guide their decision-making on where to invest.

Second, the greater transparency and accountability helps address ‘greenwashing/ESG washing’ concerns, creating stakeholder pressure to enhance sustainability practices, also at an industry level.

Third, such assessments are a useful tool for asset managers – including sustainability leaders – to highlight areas for improvement and identify best practices in addressing pressing sustainability issues in their investments.

Also read: Are your asset managers as sustainable as they claim?


More on sustainable investing

Read more about our Global Sustainability Strategy


Any views expressed here are those of the author as of the date of publication, are based on available information, and are subject to change without notice. Individual portfolio management teams may hold different views and may take different investment decisions for different clients.

The value of investments and the income they generate may go down as well as up and it is possible that investors will not recover their initial outlay. Past performance is no guarantee for future returns.

Investing in emerging markets, or specialised or restricted sectors is likely to be subject to a higher-than-average volatility due to a high degree of concentration, greater uncertainty because less information is available, there is less liquidity or due to greater sensitivity to changes in market conditions (social, political and economic conditions).

Some emerging markets offer less security than the majority of international developed markets. For this reason, services for portfolio transactions, liquidation and conservation on behalf of funds invested in emerging markets may carry greater risk.

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