UK – The Environment Agency has handed a £50m (€72.6m) “environmentally-friendly” mandate to Scottish Widows Investment Partnership.

“Confidence that environmentally-friendly investments can be made whilst maintaining the best risk/reward ratio has resulted in the Environment Agency appointing Scottish Widows Investment Partnership to its stable of specialist fund managers, increasing to nine the team responsible for managing the environment watchdog’s £1.3bn pension fund,” the agency said.

The other fund managers are Hermes, Standard Life Investments, European Credit Management, Capital International, State Street Global Advisors, Sarasin Chiswell, Morley Fund Management and Robeco.

"The Environment Agency’s Active Pension Fund, with a market value of £1.3bn, is the 20th largest fund, and most solvent, in the Local Government Pension Scheme," said Howard Pearce, head of environmental finance and pension fund management.

"SWIP was appointed following a very rigorous selection process involving more than 20 emerging markets equity managers.

“Our advisors and we believe they possess the necessary quality of staff, investment processes and track record to deliver our demanding financial performance targets and our responsible investment requirements."

The agency was advised by three consultants: Mercer Investment Consulting, Rathbone Greenbank and Bfinance.

"SWIP will invest in a relatively concentrated segregated active emerging markets equity portfolio, and will be assisted by Trucost and Global Ethical Standards in implementing the Fund's Environmental Overlay and Corporate Governance strategies," Pearce added.

"The new mandate will be funded from the Active Fund's cash in-flow. The award of the new mandate will not impact on any of the existing eight fund managers.

“SWIP has been awarded a three-year investment management agreement, which is extendable subject to satisfactory performance. It has been set a +3% out-performance target, and performance-related fees will only be payable if financial targets are met."