Candriam to donate 10% of SRI revenues to social impact and ESG education

Fund manager will create a foundation to carry out new commitments

Candriam Investors Group, the €108bn pan-European fund manager, is to donate 10% of revenues from its SRI funds – which it puts at approximately €1m per annum – to projects promoting education around sustainable finance, and to other social impact initiatives.
Speaking to Responsible Investor, Naïm Abou-Jaoudé, Candriam CEO, said the donation would be made into a not-for-profit foundation, which will then allocate the capital to two types of project.
The first, he said, would be education projects, notably in universities in Belgium, France and the UK, that promote ESG research into finance.
The second, he said, would be social impact projects based on two main lines: social re-integration schemes and private equity and social impact measurement. In the latter, Candriam is already active in private markets via its BlueOrchard microfinance fund, but is also researching expanding into private equity as an asset class, according to Abou-Jaoudé. Candriam has been owned since 2014 by New York Life Investment Management (NYLIM).In 2016, it announced it was charging up its extensive SRI fund range – much of which was put in place as the former Dexia Asset Management – via a dedicated Luxembourg SICAV to house all its SRI funds, and the creation of the Candriam Academy, an Institute for Responsible Investment aimed at education for independent financial advisors (IFAs).
Abou-Jaoudé said around 250 IFAs had qualified via the Academy since its launch.
Fund launches have followed the Luxembourg SICAV launch, including a global high yield SRI fund, an SRI emerging market debt fund and a range of smart beta sustainable ETFs.
The firm has a partnership on ESG indices and exchange-traded funds with IndexIQ, a related specialist subsidiary of New York Life.
Candriam, which stands for Conviction And Responsibility In Asset Management, was given its name at the time of the €380m acquisition of Dexia AM in 2014 by NYLIM, which is a subsidiary of the New York Life Insurance Company, the largest mutual life insurer in the US, founded in 1845.