Sustainable Investment Awards 2023

ESG innovation of the year (funds and portfolios), Europe: DWS Invest ESG Women for Women

DWS Invest ESG Women for Women is a global equity fund, launched in 2022, with a sustainable focus developed by women for women.

DWS says the female fund management team put their specific, regional, thematic, and sector knowledge into the fund on a global scale.

Aside from targeting opportunities in sectors such as health or education, a social commitment score has been created to put more weight on diversity factors, including gender.

The Sustainable Investment Awards judging panel described the initiative as "interesting" and highlighted the importance of "role models" in this area.

Katharina SeilerDWS believes socially strong companies can achieve above-average performance.

The German asset management company claims:

  • Companies with at least 30% women in management positions can achieve a stronger improvement in return on equity.
  • S&P 500 companies with above-average gender diversity on their boards have seen a 15% higher return on equity.
  • Investors consider the well-being of a company's employees to be the most financially important social factor.
  • More diverse companies can have lower risk and value volatility.

The EUR-denominated fund has outperformed the broader market with gross returns of 7.42% in the last 12 months and -4.85% since inception. Assets under management total €51 million ($55.6 million).

Katharina Seiler, portfolio manager of DWS Invest ESG Women for Women, commented: "We are delighted that DWS Invest ESG Women for Women won ESG innovation of the year (funds and portfolios), Europe. We see sustainable investing as a holistic approach that focuses on social factors alongside the environment and governance, which are an increasingly important success factor for companies."