Stockholm (NordSIP) ThinkAdvisor is reporting that UBS Wealth Management Americas has named an executive to lead its renewed Sustainable Investing drive. Stephen Freedman has been named head of the firm’s Sustainable Investing Solutions department, and will be charged with expanding products and services.
“Sustainability is a cornerstone of our business, and I look forward to… scaling up sustainable investing offerings across all asset classes and product areas,” Freedman said in a statement. “UBS is uniquely positioned to mobilize more private wealth toward sustainable investing solutions with respect to causes our clients care about, as well as helping to meet traditional return-based investing needs.”
Freedman reports to John Amore, head of Wealth Management Advice for UBS’ Americas business, having joined UBS Switzerland as an economist and policy analyst in 1998.
UBS’ clients have $972 billion, or roughly 35% of their investable assets tied up in sustainable holdings, up from $932 billion in 2015. According to the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance (GSIA), assets tied to sustainable and responsible investment strategies totaled $23 trillion in 2016, up 25% from 2014. Such investments account for 26% of all professionally managed assets worldwide, according to GSIA.
“Freedman will also promote the understanding of Sustainable Investing concepts and solutions among financial advisors in order to develop new business and help clients pursue their sustainable and impact investment goals”, UBS Wealth Management Americas added in a statement.
UBS has been working with venture capital fund Rethink Impact to help raise $110 million, half of which comes from UBS clients. UBS pledged to direct $5 billion or more of client assets to sustainable investments over the next five years at the 2017 World Economic Forum.
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