FRANCE – France's Fonds de Réserve pour les Retraites (FRR) has selected three asset managers to run an actively managed sustainable growth equity mandate as part of its ESG strategy.

The French pension fund, which introduced its ESG strategy in 2008, appointed AXA Investment Managers, Financière de l'Echiquier and Kempen Capital Management to run the €200m small-cap mandate.

The managers will invest in European SMEs that have implemented ESG policies or plan to do so.

The request for proposals launched in 2011 originally comprised two lots, split between a thematic mutual fund mandate and an active European equities mandate.

The new mandate is part of the FRR's strategy to renew the 'European Equities SRI' mandates awarded in 2006, which expired in 2011.

The FRR is now planning to select fund-of-fund managers with ESG vehicles investing in waste-water plants and other sustainable enterprises.

IPE understands that a number of managers have already been selected to run this mandate.

Although the FRR said it hoped to select an asset manager before the end of this quarter, it declined to comment further on the selection process, which is still ongoing.