Blog Posts — January 26, 2021

Qontigo Becomes PRI Signatory

Qontigo has become a signatory to the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) Association, underscoring its goal to advance sustainability in the investment industry.

The United Nations-backed PRI’s guidelines are well embedded in Qontigo’s DNA, with its STOXX index division and its parent company Deutsche Boerse Group having been PRI signatories.

Launched in 2006, the PRI now includes over 3,600 signatories with a combined USD 100 trillion under management. They include asset owners, investment managers and service providers, working together to put responsible investment into practice. The group’s six principles¹ are designed to help members incorporate environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues into long-term investment decision-making and stewardship practices.

“When you pause to consider the global and fundamentally investor-driven shift toward sustainable investing, it is impossible not to be inspired by this unprecedented grassroots commitment to social responsibility,” said Sebastian Ceria, CEO of Qontigo. “That said, the hard realities of investing remain. How do we quantify, evaluate and enhance the impact of our ambitious efforts? How do we empower sustainable investing, such that it becomes a truly transformative force for progress? At Qontigo, we define our role in pragmatic terms. With combined expertise in innovative and sophisticated analytics and indexing, our goal is to provide the clarity, transparency, data and fact-based insights that will enable investors to realize their goal: unparalleled impact in sustainable investing. Our signing of the PRI further underscores our commitment.”

“We are delighted to welcome Qontigo as a PRI signatory,” said Fiona Reynolds, CEO of PRI. “Qontigo’s commitment to bringing meaningful sustainability indicators in portfolio analytics and enhancing the index offering range is timely, given growing investor demand to drive sustainable real-world outcomes through active and passive investments.” 

Stepping up the work towards a sustainable financial landscape

The PRI has, in recent years, stepped up the guidance and expectations from members as it works alongside them to construct a more sustainable financial system. In 2018, the association established new minimum requirements for membership aimed at increasing accountability and transparency, fostering members’ engagement, and providing a clearer picture of responsible investment trends. 

Under the PRI reporting and assessment framework, signatories are required to report on their responsible-investing adoption annually. There is also a public differentiation of signatories showing the various stages of the responsible-investment process and transition, including delisting those members that do not comply. 

Last November, the PRI unveiled changes to the reporting framework for investors, which makes the assessment process more challenging for respondents but also more flexible and simpler, to ensure that being a PRI signatory remains meaningful for the industry.

Increasing members’ accountability is but one of the many ways in which the PRI helps advance the responsible agenda: they also empower and support asset owners, showcase leadership and work to derive meaningful ESG data and enable real-world impact, among other things.

Responsible returns

Recent years have seen Qontigo increase its focus on sustainable investing and on expanding the offering of products that help a growing investor base incorporate ESG criteria into portfolio construction, analysis and decision-making processes.

By being a services-provider signatory to the PRI, Qontigo supports investors in developing a more sustainable global financial system. We commit to providing, promoting and improving services that aid the implementation of the Principles within the investment industry. 

Indices and analytics

These are duties we uphold as we keep close collaboration and constant dialogue with clients, and provide support and education on their sustainable investments. 

STOXX, Qontigo’s index arm, has facilitated ESG investing since 2011 with indices that meet a wide range of sustainable criteria. That range has grown at a noticeable pace in the most recent years, with new products that track climatelow carbon and ESG integration strategies. Yet the index work is far from done: we are currently working on innovative offerings designed to strengthen the achievement of real-world outcomes in investments. 

One of our biggest upcoming projects will see the adoption of ESG parameters across our Axioma analytics toolbox, to help users make well-informed responsible investment choices. This will be a timely and much expected incorporation as the move towards ESG integration in the asset-management industry gains further momentum. 

At Qontigo, our mission is to innovate in the world of investing and portfolio analytics, and a large part of that effort and resources are dedicated to building a sustainable future. By subscribing to the PRI, Qontigo reaffirms its commitment to constructing a responsible marketplace and foster real ESG investment opportunities, to the benefit of participants and the wider society. 

¹ For the UN PRI’s six principles, see https://www.unpri.org/pri/what-are-the-principles-for-responsible-investment.