RI People & Appointments, June 18: Credit Suisse recruits for new green finance capability

The latest ESG movers and shakers

Credit Suisse is recruiting for its new Impact Advisory and Finance group (IAF), specifically Green Solutions. The Swiss giant said the IAF has a mandate to “direct, coordinate and facilitate impact finance activities” for private wealth, institutional and corporate clients. The advertised role would be “deputy to the Head of Green Solutions in the creation of this new business line at Credit Suisse”. It would also offer the chance to “assist in the origination and execution of green finance transactions for private and institutional clients across global asset classes”. The IAF team is headed by Marisa Drew, the bank’s former Global Co-Head Global Market Solutions. Link

A UK taskforce on social impact investing, created at the request of Prime Minister Theresa May, includes Sally Bridgeland chair of LGPS pool Local Pensions Partnership and Will Goodhart, chief executive of the CFA Society of the UK. The taskforce, which is chaired by Allianz Global Investors Vice-Chair Elizabeth Corley, also includes: Jamie Broderick, former CEO of UBS Wealth Management; Amanda Young, head of ESG research at Aberdeen Standard Investments; Olivia Dickson, chair of the Actuarial Council of the Financial Reporting Council; Paul Druckman, former CEO of the International Integrated Reporting Council and Tony Stenning, former managing director at BlackRock. These so-called “working group leads” will be supported by a steering group and advisory group including a host of well-known names such as Mark Fawcett, CIO at NEST; Saker Nusseibeh, CEO at Hermes Investment Management; Nigel Kershaw, CEO at Big Issue Investment and Chris Cummings, CEO at the Investment Association. The task force will work to foster innovation in the financial services sector to produce products allowing savers and investors to make a social impact and action the recommendations in ‘Growing a Culture of Social Impact Investing in the UK’, a report published by a government-endorsed advisory group which Corley also chaired.

Christie Briscoe Zarkovich, an expert in ESG, impact and mission-related investing, has been named Head of Mission-Related Investing (MRI) Research at Cambridge Associates, a newly created role at the consulting firm.

Hermes Investment Management (Hermes) has appointed Magnus Kristensen as Director of Business Development for the Nordic region. In his new role Kristensen will oversee the firm’s strategy in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland as well as institutional and wholesale channels. He will also be raising third party assets and delivering new business targets, building on the firm’s ESG and stewardship services. He was previously Head of Client Relations at Jyske Bank.

Impax Asset Management, the AIM-listed sustainability specialist, has named Arnaud Jacques Marie Gilbert de Beauchef de Servigny as non-executive director. He is a non-executive director of BNP Paribas Asset Management France and succeeds former BNP Paribas Vice Chairman Guy de Froment, who had been on the Impax board since 2008. BNP Paribas has a 24.5% stake in Impax. Last month Impax named Máire O’Connor as a director and chair of Impax Funds (Ireland) plc, its Dublin-domiciled UCITS umbrella structure. A former partner at Ernst & Young and non-executive director of the Irish Stock Exchange, she takes over from Padraic O’Connor, who is retiring.

UK social investor Social and Sustainable Capital (SASC) has boosted its investment team with three new investment managers. In its latest appointment, Hermina Popa moved from her role as independent financial consultant at Masternaut. The move comes after Toyin Ogundana, formerly of Venturesome, the social investment arm of the Charities Aid Foundation, and Krishna Chokshi, previously Senior Financial Analyst at Baxendale, joined SASC as investment managers earlier this year.Victor Makras has left his position as board member of the San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System (SFERS) to take up a role as Commissioner at the San Francisco Port Commission. Makras, who was one of the members behind a fossil fuel divestment motion at the SFERS Retirement Board, has been replaced on the board by Assessor Carmen Chu, who has over a decade’s experience serving the City and Council of San Francisco.

There are two new board members at LuxFLAG, the Luxembourg fund labelling agency. Tom Théobald, Deputy CEO of the Luxembourg for Finance body replaces his colleague Nicolas Mackel on the board. Maria Löwenbrück joined the board on behalf of fund industry association ALFI. LuxFLAG now labels 95 investment vehicles, and eight funds have been newly granted a label. Link

Lukas Daalder, Robeco’s former investment solutions CIO, is to start in August as BlackRock’s chief investment strategist, responsible for “leveraging BlackRock’s views to deliver local insights to Dutch clients and client-facing professionals.” Daalder announced he was leaving Robeco in April, having joined the asset manager as a senior strategist in 2009, before being appointed Senior Portfolio Manager Multi-Asset in 2011 and CIO Investment Solutions and head of the Solutions Products team in 2014.

Mark Woodall has been named chairman at Australian smart grid firm GreenSync, taking over from Neil Gibbs. Woodall, involved with the launch of Impax Capital in 1994 and Climate Change Capital in 2002, sits on the board of ASX-listed Carnegie Clean Energy and Future Super Investments.

John Kania is stepping down as global managing director at Boston-based social impact consultant FSG to be replaced by Lauren Smith and Greg Hills as co-CEOs. Kania remains as a member of the board and as a managing director focused on the knowledge and practice of systems change. Announcement

The Australia Institute think tank has appointed Richie Merzian as Director of Climate & Energy. Previously, Merzian worked in climate and energy agendas at the Department of Climate Change, and was Australia’s lead negotiator on adaptation to the UN Framework Convention of Climate Change. Most recently he helped coordinate the Green Climate Fund Board – the world’s largest climate fund – which approved $3.7bn for climate action in developing countries while he was advising the Board Co-Chair.

Steve Odland has been elected as President and CEO of the Conference Board, the US membership organisation. He is the former Chairman and CEO of Office Depot and currently heads the Committee for Economic Development, the Conference Board’s public policy affiliate. He succeeds Jon Spector, who becomes a Senior Advisor. Link

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has named Scott Taylor as CIO, taking over from John Hull, who retired in March after 16 years with the $6.8bn foundation. Taylor joins from the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB).

The New York Mayor’s Office of Pensions and Investments (MOPI), which advises on the $160bn City pension system and $15bnn deferred compensation plan is seeking a Senior Pensions & Investments Officer – or as Chief Pension Investment Advisor John Adler puts it on LinkedIn, “an Investment Analyst with ESG policy chops”.