The FRR, the €30bn Fonds de Réserve pour les Retraites, French Pensions Reserve Fund, has awarded five asset managers a total of €600m in socially responsible investing mandates.
They are: AGF Asset Management, Dexia Asset Management, Morley Fund Management, Pictet Asset Management and Sarasin Expertise Asset Management.
The fund said around 40 European firms expressed interest, submitting preliminary proposals in the summer of 2005. A short-list of 20 was then asked to submit final proposals in January this year. The five were selected after a “thorough review”. The original RFP was launched in 2005. The fund has said it wants to play a role in promoting best practice in SRI.
The selection criteria included the quality of SRI management and operational organisation as well as total management costs.
“The FRR thanks all of the asset management firms that participated in this selection process, and underlines the commitment they demonstrate to promoting the use of extra-financial criteria in portfolio management, whether via the development of an internal or external research capability,” the fund said in a statement.
Earlier, the fund re-tendered a €16bn transition broking brief it awarded to Goldman Sachs less than two years ago. It said: “The selection process is being reinitiated to handle the increase in volume beyond this threshold, which is expected to materialise in the months to come.”
An official at the fund stressed Goldman was not being fired and that it was “very happy” with the firm. At the end of the process Goldman may retain the mandate – if it decides to re-enter. The FRR selected Goldman in July 2004 for a three-year contract.