Listed equities manager of the year: Impax Asset Management

In a year that saw it triple its profits as it gained £10 billion ($12.1 billion) in new mandates, Impax Asset Management cemented its position as one of the largest asset managers dedicated to a more sustainable global economy, with £83 billion in assets under management (AUM).

Impax's five largest strategies have been ahead or inline with the MSCI All-Country World Index benchmark over the last five years, with the exception of its Climate strategy, which launched in 2018.

Ahead of and around the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP 26), Impax targeted its policy and advocacy work on how asset owners and managers can contribute to the Paris Agreement. It focused on three areas: financing the transition to net-zero emissions; greening the financial system, with a particular focus on biodiversity; and human capital, including the response to Covid-19.

"At Impax, we intentionally invest our clients' capital towards the transition to a more sustainable economy," said Hubert Aarts, deputy chief investment officer of listed equities at Impax. "Our rigorous and proven investment process, which is underpinned by our proprietary tools, seeks to invest in higher quality companies that demonstrate sound management of risk and returns."

Elsewhere, Impax partnered with Swedish public pension fund AP7 to produce Water: from a systemic and unpriced risk to a measurable opportunity with positive impact. The report focuses on the solutions to the sustainability problems associated with water supply and treatment and aims to provide an investment practitioner's perspective on it as a sustainability and impact topic.

"Impax continues to set standards for thematic investing in the environmental space and their portfolios reflect this in their composition - genuinely different holdings to ESG funds," commented one Environmental Finance Awards judge. "The fact that they are only about environmental issues enhances their credibility too."