Responsible investment considerations form part of our process for selecting managers. A manager that displays integrity of thought and soundness of process, while seeking to optimise performance, will be more likely to run their portfolios in a principled manner. When asking questions regarding ESG, we enquire about the manager's own voting standards and whether they subscribe to the UNPRI. In addition, managers need to be willing to work with the Governance& Sustainable Investment team of BMO Global Asset Management and respect their stock exclusions list. On segregated accounts, BMO Global Asset Management manages the voting process, while certain stocks can be excluded according our requirements. Appointed managers will be continually monitored to ensure compliance with requirements.
On the private equity side the underlying managers of the funds are monitored and questioned on their management of ESG issues. In the private equity asset class many managers are at an early stage in terms of explicitly incorporating the management of ESG into their process. Therefore F&C Private Equity, supported by the Governance and Sustainable Investment team within BMO Global Asset Management, is working to encourage progress in this area. We have twice surveyed all the General Partners we invest in to ask specific questions around their management of ESG issues, and are regularly tracking progress.
PWRI invests in this fund of funds which primarily invests in private equity funds and project-focused funds across nine climate change themes: Alternative energy, Energy efficiency, Sustainable mobility, Waste, Advanced materials, Forestry and agriculture, Water, Acclimatisation and Supporting services. The Fund closed to new investment commitments in April 2013 with commitments of €30m. The Private Equity team draws on the in-house expertise of BMO's Governance & Sustainable Investment team as part of the investment due diligence process.
PWRI requires their property managers to be member of GRESB, an industry-driven organization committed to assessing the sustainability performance of real assets around the globe, including real estate portfolios.
The pension fund's property manager has specific sustainable criteria for acquiring new real estate objects (energy labels, GPR gebouw, Lente-akkoord etc). The pension fund's property manager has specific goals on this. For instance to make sure all offices will have an energy label, give advice to tenants how they can make use of their shops in a more sustainable way.
This is also part of the annual report of its property manager SAREF, which is available at request.