The deVere Group, a leading independent financial advisory and fintech, said it will double its commitment to position $2 bln of assets under advisement into environmental, social and governance (ESG) investments.
This follows a similar announcement earlier this year when deVere said it would aim to have $1 bln in socially responsible investment vehicles within five years.
deVere’s doubling of its pledge comes as world leaders, industry chiefs and experts head to Glasgow this weekend for the start of COP26, an event seen as a critical turning point in the struggle to avert the worst effects of climate change.
“Climate change – and the major, far-reaching fallout of it for economies and communities around the world – is the greatest risk multiplier. There’s no question that it is the defining issue of our time,” said CEO and founder of deVere, Nigel Green.
In the 2020 annual risk report from the World Economic Forum (WEF), the top five risks in terms of probability were environmental, and the top four of five risks in terms of impact were both social and environmental in nature, explained Green.
“Our climate is changing at a quicker rate than previously predicted. We’re already noticing the impacts of human-created global warming.”
The deVere CEO added that, “as a society, we have a small window of opportunity to slam on the brakes to save our planet.
“But this takes determination, honesty and resources. It requires unprecedented levels of investment, which is why deVere is now aiming to position $2 bln into ESG investments within five years.”
Green said the new target is achievable as investors, keen to get ahead of the curve “as well as earn profits with purpose”, are receptive to the opportunities as the world scrabbles to mitigate the environmental, economic and social fallout of the current situation – “a situation which is likely to be a constant risk.”
He added that the latest research “underscores that the majority of ESG investments are continuing to outperform their non-sustainable counterparts and have lower volatility.”
As well as its $2 bln commitment, deVere is one of 18 founding signatories of the UN-backed Net Zero initiative, the international alliance of finance powerhouses that will help accelerate the transition to a net-zero financial system.
Its membership means it is committed to “aligning all relevant products and services to achieve net zero greenhouse gases by 2050 and to set meaningful interim targets for 2025.”
“The clock is ticking and after decades of inaction our planet hasn’t got the luxury of time,” Green concluded.
“We all need to be taking more action and at a quicker pace.”