Mercer Investment Consulting has announced its intention to focus on Responsible Investment (RI) by appointing a specialist in the field.
The firm has hired Helga Birgden, who has a background in governance and sustainable investment, to lead its RI business unit across the Asia Pacific.
Birgden’s most recent role was as manager of governance and sustainable investment at UniSuper, one of Australia's largest superannuation funds.
Mercer says Birgden will provide Asia Pacific investors with advice on formulating RI policies and integrating them into their investment programmes.
She will undertake research into regional RI specific investment management products, and assess the extent to which mainstream Asia Pacific-based fund managers' vote, engage and assess environmental, social and corporate governance issues.
Jane Ambachtsheer, Mercer Investment Consulting head of responsible investment says: “Responsible Investment is becoming increasingly important to our clients globally.
“Helga's appointment will provide a depth of expertise in our team to enable us to expand our RI capability across the Asia Pacific region.”
Tony Cole, business leader at the firm, adds: “We are pleased to be building the strength of our RI capability with this new appointment.
“With a special emphasis on Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China and Korea, Helga will work closely with Mercer's global RI team, local field consultants and researchers to help our clients integrate environmental, social, and corporate governance considerations into the investment management processes.”
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