It is classified as a dark green fund in accordance with Article 9 of the EU Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation. The fund invests only in green, social, and responsible bonds and sustainability-linked bonds SLB, and each investment object is required to have a positive net impact, for example, on society and the environment.
In assessing the sustainability of investment objects, the corporate bond fund uses, for example, the ISS ESG climate risk analysis and company-specific ESG assessments and analyses. Aktia uses the ESG data produced by Morningstar Sustainalytics. Investment objects net impact on the social and ecological environment are continuously analysed and reported through the AI-based impact tool developed by the Finnish Upright Project.
Since the year 2019 Aktia has been involved in portfolio management that takes sustainable development into account, and we have been reporting on the impact profiles of our equity and corporate bond funds via Upright s tool. There is a growing demand for investment products with clearly measurable sustainability impacts on the market. It's great to be involved in the creation of this dark green corporate bond fund, which is still rare even in Europe, and where investment objects do not only comply with the sustainable development objects but also generate significant social or environmental benefits, says Jonne Sandstr m, Portfolio Manager of the new fund.
The UI-Aktia Sustainable Corporate BondAktia Sustainable Corporate Bond will initially be available to professional institutional investors, but the goal is to make the fund available to retail investors at a later stage. The fund is sold to professional institutional investors worldwide through Universal-Investment Luxembourg S.A. Aktia's fund distribution partner in Europe. In Finland, the pension insurance company Veritas has entered the fund as a seed investor with EUR 20 million.
As a pension investor, it is important to invest responsibly and without compromising returns. The fund combines the skills of experienced portfolio managers and the innovative mindset of a startup with domestic expertise. Ville Iso-Mustaj rvi, Portfolio Manager at Veritas, says we want to support concrete actions to promote sustainability.
While UI-Aktia Sustainable Corporate BondAktia Sustainable Corporate Bond invests in investment grade bonds, it can diversify up to 20% of its investments to high yield bonds with a rating of at least BB-. There is an exception to this, which is unrated bonds in which up to 3% of the fund can be invested. Financial services and utilities are the two largest sectors of the fund's investments, with a wide company-level diversification. Most of the investments are directed towards green bonds as a result of the sustainability of corporate bond categories.
Aktia has taken ESG issues into account in its investment activities for a long time. The climate strategy is published in 2021 and is systematically developed by the company. As part of its climate strategy, Aktia joined the International Net Zero Asset Managers initiative at the end of 2021. The initiative in support of emission restrictions has become a financial standard and offers more concrete tools for sustainability work. Aktia has also participated in the CDP's Non-Disclosure Campaign and the CDP-led Science Based Targets project. Aktia reports annually on climate change in the CDP portal. Aktia became a public supporter of the TFCD Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures in 2021 and reported in accordance with these recommendations. Morningstar rated Aktia as Finland's best fund house in February 2022, an indication of Aktia's expertise in financial management. Aktia won the award for the eighth time as the best fixed income fund house.