FRANCE - Crédit Lyonnais Asset Management is to make a full-scale sortie into the arena of socially responsible investment with the launch of a new subsidiary called Integral Development Asset Management, or IDEAM.

Based in Paris, the new venture will be 80% owned by CLAM and 20% by the management of the firm. CLAM says it will initially manage assets of 700 million euros.

IDEAM will be headed up by Xavier de Bayser, chief executive of CLAM subsidiary ABF Capital Management, who takes up the role of president and Phillipe Aubry, who joins him as vice president.

De Bayser says he will remain as president at ABF, keeping an eye on the firm’s business strategy, although relinquishing some of ABF’s day-to-day operational running.

He notes that the initial 700 million euros in IDEAM assets comprises around 500 million euros run by ABF and some 200 million euros of SRI money from CLAM, which will be gradually switched to IDEAM.

The objective of the new company, he says, is to capture three billion euros in assets in three years with the goal of being the market leader in Europe.

IDEAM will have a team of 20 including three fund managers, two SRI specialists and a sales team responsible for developing institutional and corporate clients in France and abroad.

The new firm will offer a range of SRI funds focused on stock selection in accordance with sustainable development criteria, whilst relying on CLAM’s administration, IT, back office and marketing resources.

De Bayser says the targets for the new SRI manager will firstly be continental Europe, particularly the Netherlands, Scandinavia, Switzerland, Germany, Spain and Italy, but with a possibility of looking at the Japanese market in the future.

CLAM manages around 1.6 billion euros of European pension fund assets.