Investor of the year (asset owner): Zurich

Zurich claimed top spot among asset owners, as investor of the year.

Its impact portfolio impressed Environmental Finance Bond Awards judges, having increased the total amount of impact investments in 2021 by 22%, to $7 billion, incorporating the use of impact indicators in its portfolio decisions and demonstrating growth across all asset classes.

Johanna KöbThe portfolio increased allocation to social and sustainability bonds by 52% in comparison to last year. With $5.8 billion invested, green, social and sustainability bonds form the largest part of Zurich's impact investing portfolio.

As of the end of 2021, Zurich's impact portfolio helped avoid 4.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions, the majority coming from Zurich's investments in green bonds, and "improved the lives" of 3.6 million people on a yearly basis, the investor said.

Commenting on what set Zurich apart, Johanna Köb, Zurich’s head of responsible investment, said: “Almost ten years ago, we set a target to invest $1 billion in green bonds, making up a thirteenth of the existing market back then. Then the market started growing and diversifying – into municipalities, banks, and more. And we kept growing with that. Supporting the market to scale, innovate and share back our learnings has always been important to us.

"It’s beautiful to see how the market has grown in the past decade.”