- Total AUM increases by €18 billion in 2021 reaching a record high €158 billion at year end
- €105 billion of total AUM (67%) was ESG-related at year end
- €7.4 billion of net sales in 2021, with thematic equity funds attracting €2.1 billion
London: Accelerating investor appetite for ESG-related funds and strategies propelled total assets under management (AUM) at Candriam, a global multi-asset manager focused on sustainable and responsible investments, to a record €158 billion at year end 2021. This was an increase of €18 billion, up from €140 billion in 2020.
ESG-related AUM comprised 67% of Candriam’s total AUM, surpassing a milestone €100 billion for the first time in the firm’s history, and reached €105 billion at year-end (31 December 2021).
Candriam’s actively managed range of thematic equity strategies, designed with the aim to have a positive environmental or social impact while providing a long-term return on investment, proved the most popular strategies with investors, attracting €2.1 billion and underpinning total net sales of €7.4 billion in 2021. Thematic global equity continues to be an important growth area for the firm, with several new hires made in 2021 and further fund launches anticipated in 2022.
Equities were the most popular asset category in 2021, representing almost 50% of the year’s inflows (€3.9 billion), while bonds, such as global high yield, attracted 26% (€2 billion). Absolute return and asset allocation attracted 30% (€2.2 billion) of total inflows.
The firm’s net sales and AUM growth last year was underpinned by continued outperformance relative to benchmarks across its diverse product range. Over half of Candriam’s funds were awarded 4 or 5 stars by Morningstar at the end of 2021.
Constructive engagement and ESG proxy voting are two key sustainability performance drivers for Candriam. In 2021 the firm participated in 2060 meetings with portfolio companies and voted on 26,605 resolutions. Candriam opposed around 25% of total management resolutions, particularly in relation to ‘Say on Climate’, where Candriam considered a company’s climate transition plan to lack the sufficient detail needed in order for Candriam to have an informed vote.
Naïm Abou-Jaoudé, CEO of Candriam & Chairman of New York Life Investment Management International, said: “I would like to thank our clients who continue to put their trust and confidence in Candriam, recognizing our role as a pioneer in sustainable investing, driven by its core values of conviction and responsibility. As a result of this, we were able to achieve another record year of AUM, continuing our growth trajectory where we’ve seen assets double over the last seven years.”
The strength of our platform is reflected in the unrelenting commitment of our employees, the long-term support of our shareholders, and the nimbleness of our organization that offers advanced ESG knowledge, innovation, transparency and a constant focus on performance. With this unique and time-tested approach, I remain confident in our ability to continue to provide a value-added service to our clients.”
The firm was involved in 18 new collaborative initiatives during the year, including launching an initiative prioritising human rights in relation to facial recognition technology (FRT), which sought constructive dialogue with global companies that are developing or already using the technology. 50 global investors, representing more than US$4.5 trillion in AUM, became signatories to the Investor Statement on Facial Recognition.
Candriam continued to expand its business over 2021 including strengthening its UK Sales team with several senior hires and promotions as well as developing its Nordics business with a senior sales hire and local distribution partnership. The firm also strengthened its focus on global financial institutions and the insurance segment of the market and continued to invest in its private assets’ capabilities.
Sovereign Sustainability Model
In February 2021, Candriam updated its Sovereign Sustainability Model to reflect how the emphasis of sovereign analysis must shift from economic development to sustainable development. The firm’s research found that if environmentally inefficient countries continue to deplete large amounts of natural resources, they will eventually experience devastating social, economic, and environmental repercussions. By placing environmental considerations at the centre of the Sovereign Sustainability Model, Candriam offers a unique and forward-looking outlook on sustainability analysis, which it believes will maximise long term value creation.
In 2021, Candriam became a signatory to the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative. The firm announced a commitment to secure a 50% reduction in emissions across a significant share of its investment portfolios by 2030, and to transition to net zero by 2050 or sooner. The firm confirmed it would pursue decarbonisation objectives through the integration of climate in Candriam’s ESG process alongside its industry leading engagement and stewardship strategy.
An ongoing focus for Candriam has been to encourage collaboration and shared learning within the wider asset management industry through the Candriam Academy, the first open-access, global learning platform on responsible investing. The online course aims to educate and train financial professionals through an innovative online platform with rich, dynamic, and practical content. As of 31 December 2021, the Academy had over 10,000 members across 40 countries and 11 focused courses across four socially responsible investing modules, including two new courses launched in 2021: Climate Change and the ESG Analysis of Companies.
Double Impact and Philanthropy
As part of Candriam’s philanthropic approach to donate 10% of the net management fee across its sustainable strategies, Candriam donated €3 million to social and green projects in 2021 via its philanthropic arm, The Candriam Institute for Sustainable Development.
CANDRIAM STATEMENT ON ITS INVESTMENTS IN RUSSIA
First and foremost, our thoughts are with the Ukrainian people at this terrible and uncertain time. Candriam and its employees are deeply saddened by the events we are seeing unfold and deplore the human tragedy this brings. No matter where we are in the world and no matter our heritage, ultimately this is something that affects us all.
Candriam has excluded Russian sovereign debt from its investible universe across its sustainable strategies for many years given the country’s violations of international law and its suppression of human rights and civil liberties domestically. Across its broader range of strategies, Candriam anticipated rising geopolitical risks related to Ukraine and Russia in early 2022 and reduced its exposure accordingly, halting all Russian investments across its entire investment platform on January 25.
Today, Candriam has almost zero exposure to Russia at around 0.002% of total AUM and will continue to reduce this exposure over time until total divestment is achieved.
We have also joined in the growing global support for Ukraine with a donation from the Candriam Institute for Sustainable Development to UNICEF to aid the Ukrainian people. This is in addition to a $300,000 corporate grant donation our parent, New York Life, has made to non-profit disaster response organizations addressing the Ukrainian humanitarian crisis. We will continue to explore what further contribution our employees can make to the humanitarian effort.
Candriam stands for "Conviction AND Responsibility In Asset Management" and is a European multi-specialist asset manager. A pioneer and leader in sustainable investments since 1996, Candriam manages around EUR 158 billion of assets under management with a team of more than 600 professionals. It operates management offices in Luxembourg, Brussels, Paris, and London, and has client representatives in more than 20 countries throughout continental Europe, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the Middle East. Candriam offers investment solutions in several key areas: bonds, equities, absolute performance strategies, and asset allocation, with a broad and innovative range of ESG strategies covering all its asset classes.
For more information see: www.candriam.com
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To fully understand the fund’s risk profile, we advise investors to carefully review the official prospectus and the description of the underlying risks. The value of investment may decline due in particular to the fund’s exposure to the risks linked to derivative financial instruments, emerging markets, liquidity and concentration, capital loss, equity risk, sustainability risk and ESG investment risk. The extra financial objectives presented in this document are based on the realisation of assumptions made by Candriam. Implementing Candriam’s ESG rating models does require access to various quantitative as well as qualitative data, depending on the sector and the exact activities of a given company. For more information on the sustainability-related aspects of the fund, including sustainable finance disclosures, and the transparency codes, visit the page: https://www.candriam.com/en/professional/market-insights/sfdr/
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 As of 31 Dec 2021. Assets under management (AUM) includes assets which do not fall within the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's definition of 'regulatory AUM' in Form ADV, Part 1A.
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 New York Life Investments is a service mark used by New York Life Investment Management Holdings LLC and its subsidiary New York Life Investment Management LLC. New York Life Investment Management LLC is a wholly-owned indirect subsidiary of New York Life Insurance Company.
 Source: New York Life Investments ranked 27th among the world’s largest money managers within Pensions & Investments, June 2021. Rankings are based on total worldwide institutional assets under management for the year-end 2020. New York Life Investments assets include assets of affiliated investment advisors.