IMPACT Awards 2022

Re/insurer of the year: Zurich Insurance

Zurich Insurance has pledged to commit 5% of total assets to impact investments by 2025. A long-standing commitment to impact investing won 'Re/Insurer of the year'.

Danielle BrasselDanielle Brassel, director of responsible investment at Zurich, said: "We've measured our impact since 2019. Investors should look at it as simply another data point because it makes us better investors.

"Our confidence to invest more in impact has been driven by our longstanding experience that started with our green bond programme.'Measurability ’ is a key feature of impact, so we felt that we have really been laying the groundwork for this since 2017.”

Commenting on the impact investment space, Brassel told Environmental Finance: "Measuring impact can be volatile. At the moment, we have to collect our numbers from lots of different sources. It would be great if we could find a data provider to reliably do it for us, but it seems we are still not there in terms of standardisation."

Zurich's impact investments are linked to the firm’s objective of climate mitigation and community resilience and can be linked to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and currently are 75% focused on environmental issues and 25% on social issues.

The impact investments are focused on private equity, infrastructure investments private debt and green, social and sustainability bonds. But Brassel has previously said in order to reach the 5% target, it will have to find new asset classes to invest in.

As such, Zurich has conducted research and identified nature-based solutions as a potential asset class.