ESG sustainable growth / mrPliskin

A new partnership between two asset managers aims to heat up competition in responsible investment (RI). Invesco Canada Ltd. has partnered with NEI Investments — a relationship Invesco will leverage as it focuses on its ESG offerings.

As part of the partnership, NEI, a subsidiary of Aviso Wealth with more than $11 billion in assets under management and 35 years’ experience in RI, will apply its expertise to Invesco’s Canadian ESG index ETFs as a complementary layer of RI oversight, a release said.

“Our ability to leverage NEI’s expertise and strong Canadian track record as a globally respected leader in sustainable intelligence will provide investors in these funds with greater confidence, and the most robust and varied indexed ESG strategies in the Canadian ETF market,” said Pat Chiefalo, senior vice-president, Canadian head of ETFs and indexed strategies with Invesco, in the release.

According to data from the Investment Funds Institute of Canada, a total of $8.2 billion was invested in RI ETFs (those with an RI or ESG mandate) at the end of 2021, representing 2.4% of total ETF assets.

While that proportion is small, it’s grown dramatically in just the last couple of years. Last year, sales in RI ETFs totalled $4.2 billion or about 7% of total industry net sales.

Eight of the 11 Invesco ESG index ETFs were introduced last January. NEI will serve as a subadvisor on the funds beginning Nov. 1.

Last month in Canada, 15 new ESG ETFs launched, including 10 from Emerge Canada Inc., bringing total new ESG ETF launches to 43 in 2022 so far, based on data from National Bank Financial. In 2021, a record 42 ESG ETFs launched.