Dutch sustainability manager Actiam to be bought by Cardano Group

Anglo-Dutch investment management firm to acquire pure play sustainability manager from Dutch insurer Athora

Dutch pure play sustainable investment manager Actiam is to be bought by Anglo-Dutch investment firm Cardano Group. The details of the acquisition were not disclosed.   

The deal, which was announced today and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022, will see Cardano’s assets under management swell by over £18.5bn (€22bn), and, it is hoped, significantly enhance the group’s “sustainability and impact investment offering”. 

Actiam, which is owned by Dutch insurer Athora Netherlands, is a well-known name in the responsible investment community. It was behind the first impact investment fund launched in 2007 and, more recently, was a co-founder of the Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF) and the Partnership for Biodiversity Accounting Financials (PBAF) initiatives. PCAF in particular has become hugely influential with over 100 financial institutions, representing more than $53trn in assets, committing to measure and disclose their emissions using the initiative’s framework.   

The proposed acquisition will allow Cardano, which is privately owned, to offer “sustainable equity and fixed income portfolios in both the active and passive space, as well as sustainable stewardship, in house”, the group said.  

In December last year, Cardano added Will Martindale, previously the Principles for Responsible Investment’s Director of Policy and Research, to its ranks as Group Head of Sustainability.   

As part of the deal, Cardano will enter a 10-year long-term strategic partnership with Athora to manage around £13bn (€15.4bn) of the Dutch insurer’s assets and continue to offer Actiam’s capablities within Athora Netherland’s differentiated product offering. 

Following completion of the acquisition, Cardano will manage more than £50bn (€60bn) in assets and employ more than 500 people in the UK and the Netherlands across its advisory, investment management and DC businesses.  

 “I am convinced that Cardano and ACTIAM fit together perfectly,” said Frank Kusse, CEO of ACTIAM. “The deal secures the expertise in impact investing and ESG-focused equity and fixed income asset management, while leveraging of Cardano’s leading expertise in investment advisory and risk management.”   

“As we start to work with our new colleagues, we look forward to introducing our pension fund and investment clients in the Netherlands and the UK to our broadened advisory and asset management proposition with ESG at its heart,” added Michael de Lathauwer, Group CEO of Cardano.