Standard Life launches European Corporate Bond SRI fund

Edinburgh-based Standard Life Investments has launched a European Corporate Bond Sustainable and Responsible Investing Fund (Sicav).

“The new fund combines Standard Life Investments’ strong active corporate credit performance and its expertise in integrating environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in the investment process,” Standard Life said in a statement.

Companies that fail to comply with the principles of the United Nations Global Compact are excluded from the fund, along with firms involved in manufacturing cluster bombs and nuclear weapons, the investment manager said. Companies with a poor record of performance and disclosure on sustainability issues in sectors that have high sensitivity to environmental and social factors will also be avoided.

The manager of the fund is Samantha Lamb, an Investment Director at the firm, backed up by fellow Investment Director Craig MacDonald.

Julie McDowell, Head of Sustainable and Responsible Investment (SRI) for Standard Life Investments said: “We have already seen substantial growth in SRI Equities funds. This new SRI fund is for those investors who prefer credit and are looking for consistent low-risk performance along with evidence ESG issues have been incorporated into the investment process.

“Our European Corporate Bond Fund has been popular across Europe, but we are now experiencing demand for an SRI version in particular from The Netherlands, Scandinavia and Switzerland. The new fund will tap into the expertise of our corporate bond team and build on the integration of ESG into our investment process. At the same time it will avoid investment in companies whose activities are inconsistent with international standards.”

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