I am proud of our progress this year in driving a continued focus on sustainability and our people across the business and wider industry, as we strive to create a more sustainable world.
At ICG we invest sustainably, we operate with purpose, and we act in a way that is transparent. We believe that adopting this approach is key to our success in executing our ambitious plans.
We have made significant progress in the last year, including broadening this report to encompass our wide-ranging efforts around sustainability and people. Transparency in communications with our stakeholders is important in maintaining the trust of the people with whom we work and whom we serve, and this report is an important step in enhancing our corporate disclosures.
The past year has seen progress on a number initiatives. Most notably, I am incredibly proud of our commitment to achieving net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across our operations and investments by 2040. Our commitment is supported by two ambitious targets by 2030, which have been approved and validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (see p. 7). As one of the first alternative asset managers to commit to net zero, we are proud to be part of this important initiative and contribute to an industry-wide drive to achieve net zero emissions. This is the latest step in our long-standing focus on using our position of influence to help mitigate climate change.
We will continue to play an active role in bringing the industry along with us in these efforts, and work with our peers through Initiative Climat International (iCI), Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and the Net Zero Asset Managers initiative to enable a robust and consistent focus on the decarbonisation across our investment portfolios.
Our people are key to our success and we continue to support and invest in their development, skills and expertise as well as creating an inclusive environment for them to succeed. Whether through our enhanced learning and development programmes, targeted engagement on topics of importance to our employees, or our efforts around diversity and inclusion, we have focused this year on ensuring that ICG is well positioned to attract, retain and develop the very best. I am excited by the range of backgrounds we welcomed to the organisation and energised by the quality and creativity of their thoughts and decision making.
Our footprint and impact are far greater through our investment activities. We have continued to make progress on enhancing our Responsible Investing (RI) framework across our investment strategies to enable us to better identify, assess and embed environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations in the investment process.
The vast majority of the funds we manage are classified as Article 8 under the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR), meaning they promote environmental and/or social characteristics. ESG is also integral to the design and launch of new strategies: 2021 saw the launch of our third sustainably-themed fund: Real Estate Debt VI, which is in addition to Infrastructure Equity and Sale and Leaseback launched in 2020 and 2019 respectively. We also launched Europe VIII with an enhanced ESG framework focused on climate change, human capital management, and diversity and inclusion (see p. 15).
The focus on ESG has increased substantially over the last twelve months and I anticipate it will continue. I welcome this heightened interest, and I firmly believe that the long-term financial prospects of ICG are intimately entwined with the long-term environmental and social actions we take. As we continue to execute on our growth ambition, the way we act is just as important as what we do.
I invite you to explore the progress we have made in this Sustainability and People Report.
- Read the Sustainability & People Report 2021