Vigeo, the French SRI research house, is to actively court business from UK institutional clients with the appointment of a marketing representative to lead a presence in London. The research house, which already has offices in Paris, Brussels, Casablanca and Milan, is currently hiring for the position. A decision on the recruit is expected in the next few months. Nicole Notat, Founder and President of Vigeo, said she saw considerable promise in attracting business in the UK: “We think the UK is a very interesting market and we are developing research that we think will work well there.” The expansion comes despite Vigeo finding itself facing stiffer competition in its home French market with the arrival of rival firms in Paris. Last month, Sustainalytics, the Amsterdam-based ESG research house, hired Antonio Celeste, Head of International BusinessDevelopment at Vigeo, as its own Director of Institutional Relations for its new Paris office. And just a fortnight back, Oekom research, the Munich based sustainable and responsible investment rating agency, announced it was setting up a new office in Paris and is advertising for a Sales Manager. Their arrivals in Paris reflect a large French client base for a growing socially responsible investing (SRI) market. Vigeo has a strong presence in the European SRI research market with a staff of about 90. It counts a majority of the French SRI asset managers among its clients. The firm is owned by a collegiate of asset and pension fund managers (46.16%), trade unions (26.35%) and corporates (27.49%).