Sustainable Products and Services
We invest in quality companies with sustainable franchises and attractive growth prospects that are managed responsibly and provide sustainable products and services.
For us, sustainable products and services are those that generate measurable social or environmental benefits alongside financial returns, creating long-term value for shareholders and society at large.
Given the mainstay of our investments is in financial services, we believe we represent a positive force in society by providing our clients with affordable and accessible life and health insurance, retirement savings programs, and a suite of investment products, including socially responsible investment funds. Our group’s financial consultants and advisors are also contributing to financial literacy by providing financial advice and guidance to our clients. These services are helping to make a real difference for a broad spectrum of society in all age and income groups – including those with lower incomes.
We are also helping finance sustainable and renewable energy projects, through our subsidiaries Power Sustainable and Great-West Lifeco. These types of investments are supporting the transition to a low carbon economy, while positively impacting society and the environment.
Highlights from our Group Companies
SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE INVESTMENT FUNDS
Several companies within our group offer socially responsible investment funds which enable their clients to match their evolving needs and expectation while working towards meeting the world’s sustainability challenges.
Putnam Investments, a Great-West Lifeco subsidiary, offers two mutual funds with a dedicated sustainability focus: the Putnam Sustainable Future Fund and the Putnam Sustainable Leaders Fund. The Sustainable Future portfolio invests in companies that have demonstrated leadership in the sustainability issues that are financially material to their businesses, while the Sustainable Leaders portfolio invests in companies whose products and services provide solutions to essential sustainability challenges. Combined assets of these two funds were approximately $6.9 billion as of March 31, 2023, making Putnam Investments one of the ten largest managers of dedicated sustainable equity assets in the United States.
Similarly, through its operating companies, IGM Financial has a suite of socially-responsible products and services. The IG Mackenzie Betterworld SRI Fund, follows a sustainable investment approach, prioritizing ESG factors by leveraging sustainable approaches such as excluding certain industries, best-in-class ESG and ESG stewardship. In addition, the Fund does not invest in companies whose revenues are primarily derived from alcohol, cannabis, tobacco, gambling, pornography or critical weapons systems. In 2022, Mackenzie Investments also partnered with Wealthsimple to launch the Wealthsimple North American Green Bond Index ETF, which seeks to invest in issuers of green bonds that promote climate or other environmentally sustainable initiatives such as renewable energy, pollution prevention and climate change adaptation, or in social bonds that are devoted to financing projects that address social issues such as poverty, food security and socioeconomic advancement.
Moreover, IGM Financial offers charitable giving funds, Registered Disability Savings Plans and retail mutual funds in Canada that abide by the United-Nations supported Principles for Responsible Investment. For instance, IG Wealth Management and Mackenzie Investments have continued to be market leaders in offering Registered Disability Savings Plans (RDSP) for clients or family members with disabilities, providing them access to a tax-preferred savings vehicle and at the same time take advantage of generous government grants and bonds.
Mackenzie Investments also offers investment funds that prioritize sustainability or ESG in the investment objective. These funds include:
The Mackenzie Global Sustainable Bond Fund and ETF Combines ESG-labelled debt with issuers that exhibit strong ESG characteristics;
The Mackenzie Global Women’s Leadership Fund and ETF are broadly diversified funds that invest only in companies committed to gender diversity and women in leadership;
The Mackenzie Greenchip Global Environmental Equity Fund holds stocks and bonds focused on the environmental economy; and
The Mackenzie Corporate Knights Global 100 Index Fund and ETF, launched in 2023.
For its part, Investment Planning Counsel, another IGM Financial subsidiary, has its dedicated ESG portfolio, the IPC Essentials ESG Balanced Portfolio, which is designed to provide long-term capital appreciation by primarily investing in equity and fixed income ETFs that have an environmental, social and governance focus.