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Schroders’ Sustainable Growth Fund receives RIAA certification

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MEDIA RELEASE: Schroders has renamed its Strategic Growth Fund as it brings additional focus on sustainability to its investment processes. The Schroder Sustainable Growth Fund is Schroders’ first sustainable multi-asset strategy available in the Australian market and it has received certification within the Responsible Investment Association Australasia (RIAA)’s Responsible Investment Certification Program.

The Sustainable Growth Fund maintains its investment return objective of delivering an investment return before fees of 5 per cent a year above Australian inflation* over the medium to long term. The fund adopts a growth-biased strategic asset allocation and uses Schroders’ global investment capabilities to achieve its investment objectives.

However, Schroders has enhanced the fund’s investment processes, evolved its asset allocation framework and embedded sustainability into the underlying investment building blocks with additional objectives of improving its sustainability profile and significantly reducing carbon intensity compared to its benchmark. A recent example is through the biodiversity lens it now applies to Australian equities, the firm having hired William Wu, an experienced portfolio manager and also co-author and lecturer of Sustainable and Responsible Investing at UNSW, in 2021.

Schroders’ CIO and head of multi-asset Simon Doyle says sustainability has been a key research priority for the team for many years and this will continue given the ever-increasing importance of ESG themes to companies, investors and regulators.

“The changes to the fund reflect the evolution of our multi-asset investment approach, in particular, how we think about sustainability in all aspects of the construction of a diversified portfolio. The Sustainable Growth Fund builds on our longstanding multi-asset investment approach (which already has a strong focus on sustainability at the asset allocation level), with a more stringent sustainability focus amongst the underlying investments.

“We aim to look holistically at sustainability, combining negative screening in key areas, whilst ensuring capital continues to support companies committed to positive change and solutions. The fund will deliver long-term benefits for our investors while also having a positive impact on people and planet.

“We expect this strategy to evolve over time to become even more sustainable, as ESG views and research develop. The strategy is also expected to allocate a small proportion of capital towards impact type investments accessed either through thematic strategies or Schroders’ existing global thematic equity range,” Mr Doyle said.

The fund remains rated ‘Highly Recommended’ by Lonsec and ‘Recommended’ by Zenith.

*Inflation is defined as the RBA’s Trimmed Mean, as published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

 

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