Investing in the world’s best interests

17 December 2020

Update on our investment strategy

Social and environmental change is happening faster than ever. Global warming, shifting demographics and the technology revolution are reshaping our planet. These social and environmental trends pose increasingly significant risks to investments.

We also understand that our members are increasingly conscious of acting in the best interests of the environment and society at large, and expect us to invest in a way that reflects these values. It’s no longer about profits above all else. How a company makes its money is just as important as how much it makes, and by investing in the right companies now, we can help contribute towards a more sustainable world.

That’s why Atlas have worked closely with the team at Schroders (our investment managers for the Multi Asset Portfolio Funds used in the default strategies) to take account of the environmental and social impact of investments in our main investment strategy. As mentioned in last year’s newsletter, we moved some of the investments in these funds into an investment which looks at both the positive and negative impacts that companies have on society and the environment (the Schroders’ Sustainable Multi Factor Equity (SMFE) Fund).

We want to have a positive impact

Following that success, we have decided to go further and add the Schroder Global Sustainable Growth (GSG) Fund into the Multi Asset Portfolio Funds. This invests globally in the shares of companies that are managed for the long term, and account for their impact on all stakeholders. In order to be selected in the fund, companies must have a demonstrable track record of managing the business for the long term, recognising its responsibilities to its customers, employees and suppliers, and respecting the environment.

Examples of companies held in the portfolio include:

  • a US water technology management company, whose products help improve water usage and efficiency (an area of growing importance given climate risk), and
  • a Danish wind turbine supplier which has performed well as the shift to renewable energy continues to accelerate.

Our investment managers focusing on mental health

We also recognise that holding companies to account and helping to drive change towards better practices is fundamental to delivering positive outcomes for members and society. An example of this in practice is a recent collaborative engagement that Schroders, as one of our investment managers, undertook, looking at employee mental health. Together with a number of other investors, Schroders contacted FTSE 100 companies to encourage them to put measures in place to help support employees’ mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

As at 30 September 2020, over half of the companies contacted have responded, with 75% showing commitment to mental health from the CEO or senior management, over 50% providing training for line managers and employee assistance programmes and 38% providing flexible working.

There is more about some of our other individual investment funds here. If you want more detailed information about any of the funds we have discussed above, please visit