- An unconstrained bond fund for sale in in France, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK
- Managed by AXA IM’s Global Rates and Responsible Investment teams
AXA Investment Managers (AXA IM) recently launched the AXA WF Planet Bonds fund, a green bonds fund that aims to support clients’ transition to a low carbon economy by providing investors with access to the growing global green bonds market.
Commenting on the launch, Andrea Rossi, CEO of AXA Investment Managers, said: “As long-term investors we recognize the threat of climate change and the need to mitigate the potential impact on the global economy... We are also able to support clients’ transition to a low carbon economy, for example, through offering investment in green bonds.”
The AXA WF Planet Bonds fund invests in both pure green bonds and bond issuers with a high environmental impact with the aim of ensuring sufficient diversification and liquidity. AXA IM’s Global Rates team in collaboration with the Responsible Investment (RI) team runs it.
Olivier Vietti, Lead Fund Manager of the AXA WF Planet Bonds fund, commented: “We feel the bond market is a natural vehicle to support energy efficiency, renewable energy and other projects related to climate change, as bonds can provide a direct and transparent way for investors to invest in low carbon solutions. This fund aims to offer an attractive yield meaning responsible investors do not have to ‘give up’ yield, relative to the wider fixed income universe, when investing to make a positive environmental impact.”
A key attribute of the Fund is its highly robust investment selection process, which is also flexible and unconstrained from a benchmark to avoid any bias from following an index. In the selection process issuers in the eligible investment universe are ranked according to AXA IM’s internal ESG (environment, social and governance) assessment process to determine which issuers have high environmental conviction and therefore present a solid case for green investment. The Fund aims to be well diversified and offer an attractive yield and risk vs return profile by focusing on yield enhancement and investing in investment grade and high yield issuers.
Matt Christensen, Head of Responsible Investment at AXA IM, commented: “This solution also offers the possibility for investors to be aware of the type of projects that will be financed through their investment, including wind farms, green commercial buildings, public transport solutions and waste water systems.”
Jerome Broustra, Head of Global Rates at AXA IM, added: “AXA IM has been active in the green bonds sector since 2012 and we have already invested EUR 1 billion globally in this market segment. Despite its massive growth over the last year, this market is still relatively small and we want to support its development.”
The AXA WF Planet Bonds fund is a Luxembourg-domiciled SICAV. The Fund has both retail and institutional share classes and is registered for distribution in France, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK.
AXA IM has been committed to responsible investment since 1997 when the company first won a RI specific mandate. In 2001, the firm set up a dedicated RI business unit and in 2006 a global RI team was established. The strategy for including RI principles as part of a wider range of investment strategies at AXA IM was formalised in 2010 leading to comprehensive ESG integration and large dedicated mandates in this area by 2014. This year the AXA Group has vowed to triple its green investments by 2020.