Responsible Funds, August 2: Prudential takes 15% of new listed renewables group

The round-up of responsible funds news

The UK’s Prudential Plc group and its M&G arm have emerged as 15.83% holders of newly listed onshore wind and solar energy investment vehicle The Renewables Infrastructure Group Ltd. (TRIG). In addition, Henderson Global Investors has 8% of the Guernsey-incorporated closed ended investment company, according to filings. TRIG last month raised £300m (€344m) in an initial share sale in London and plans to use the proceeds of the sale to buy a 276MW initial portfolio of 14 onshore wind farms and four solar parks in the UK, France and Ireland.

A new £50m fund that aims to accelerate deployment and reduce the cost of energy for renewable projects has been launched. The Accelerated Renewable Deployment Portfolio (ARDP) is being promoted by Narec Capital, the UK’s renewable energy accelerator, in collaboration with Spanish power group IBERDROLA and AIM-quoted intellectual property incubator Frontier IP Group plc. They said: “Fundraising for the ARDP is underway and both parties are already engaged in assessing and refining a joint deal pipeline.”

Net retail sales of ethical funds were £11m in June 2013, according to UK trade body the Investment Management Association (IMA). 

Funds under management were £8.2bn in the sector, with their share of total funds under management at 1.2%, the same as this time last year.

The First Trust ISE Global Wind Energy Index Fund, an exchange traded fund launched in 2008 to track the ISE Global Wind Energy Index, has posted “solid returns” of 33.81% as of June 30 for a one-year period, according to an analysis by Zacks Research. It added the ETF recently hit a 52-week high of $9.70, and said: “On July 26, FAN recorded solid inflows, suggesting that there is good investor demand for the product.”

Sweden-based activist investor Cevian Capital has reportedly closed its sole fund to new money. Financial News cited a spokesman as saying that the main share classes of the Cevian Capital II fund stopped accepting new cash after July 1 and that current fund assets are about $10bn.Calvert Investments, the US sustainable fund firm, is to offer a new Green Bond Fund from October, according to documents filed at the Securities and Exchange Commission. Portfolio management will be handled by Catherine Roy, Vishal Khanduja and Mauricio Agudelo. Calvert says: “The fund seeks to maximize income, to the extent consistent with preservation of capital, primarily through investment in bonds, with a focus on opportunities related to climate change and other environmental issues.” Green investment criteria have been established for general purpose corporate bonds and project-specific bonds. In the absence of a track record for the new fund, Calvert points to the performance of its ESG Green Fixed Income Strategy, which has returned 7.23% since inception in May 2011.

A new UK social impact fund is being launched by Liechtenstein’s LGT Group and German private bank Berenberg, according to a report in Investment Week. Impact Ventures UK is looking to raise about £30m and already has a cornerstone £10m commitment from the UK government’s Big Society Capital. It’s believed to be the first closed-ended fund investing solely in social impacts in the country. Investments will be selected by LGT Venture Philanthropy. The minimum investment is £250,000 and the fund is suitable for sophisticated private or institutional investors.

Glennmont Partners, the former BNP Paribas Clean Energy Partners team, has reportedly launched its second European clean energy fund. It is looking to raise €500m from investors.


The Shanghai Stock Exchange is to launch a Green Cities index. It will be part of a family of ‘urbanisation’ indices launched with China Securities Index (CSI), the index provider the exchange co-owns with the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. The new suite would “serve as new benchmarks and investable underlyings for investors” and launch on August 26. Link