›  SRI  ›  Interview 

Sabine Castellan Poquet : “To respect the ’Paris Agreements’, we will have to achieve carbon neutrality of our portfolios by 2050 at the latest”

According to Sabine Castellan Poquet, Investment Director Macif - Aema group, interest rise increase, a consequence of this resurgence of inflation, is rather positive for life insurers who are structural bond investors.

Article also available in : English EN | français FR

Next-Finance : Can you introduce your company ? What is your current outstanding assets and what is your current asset allocation?

Sabine Castellan Poquet : As a mutual insurer, Macif offers protection offers and services in damage insurance, health-providence and finance-savings. Macif has 5.6 million members and customers and 6.6 billion euros in turnover in 2020. At the end of 2021, the size of the balance sheet amounted to 40 billion euros. In line with our liabilities commitments, we have a portfolio mainly composed of interest rate products (76%). The real estate portfolio and equity investments represent respectively 10% and 7% in market value.

Do you expect to change this asset allocation with the war in Ukraine and rising inflation?

We had no direct exposure to Ukraine and Russia. One of the consequences of the conflict is the rise of commodity prices (energy, metals and agricultural raw materials) and therefore an acceleration of inflation. Interest rise increase, a consequence of this resurgence of inflation, is rather positive for life insurers who are structural bond investors. We will be able to invest at a level not seen for many months with the exception of the March-April 2020 period at the start of the health crisis. This context of inflation reinforces our conviction on real estate with a quality portfolio, particularly in terms of energy, that we have built up over the years.

This context of inflation reinforces our conviction on real estate with a quality portfolio, particularly in terms of energy, that we have built up over the years.
Sabine Castellan Poquet, Investment Director Macif - Aema group

Many institutional investors are placing their portfolios on the defensive in anticipation of increased risk. Is this also your case? Do you use specific hedging strategies?

We have a diversified portfolio and allocations in line with our asset/liability management. We are not currently using hedging strategies: in fact, we preferred to change our allocation by taking profits, for example.

Do you think that this war will increase investors’ interest in ESG issues or, on the contrary, put it into perspective? For example, some armament companies could find favor with ESG investors, whereas until now they had been rather excluded from this type of fund...

I think that the war has highlighted Europe’s dependence on Russian fossil fuels. Also, this awareness will strengthen the desire to accelerate investments in renewable energies, as well as on the key players in the energy transition. These investments will also increase our energy sovereignty. The issues debated since the start of the war also highlight the importance of companies taking human rights issues into account, as well as the reputational and operational risks associated with these issues.

Are you looking to reduce the carbon footprint of your portfolios? In concrete terms, what commitments have you made in terms of energy transition? What methods do you use to measure this carbon footprint within your portfolios?

To respect the “Paris Agreements”, we will have to achieve carbon neutrality of our portfolios by 2050 at the latest. The first step is obviously to measure the carbon footprint. Rather than seeking to reduce as quickly as possible, we want to finance the actors of a just transition, in particular by adopting a commitment approach with issuers. We plan to set intermediate reduction targets (at 2030 and 2040) by the end of 2022. The evolution of our carbon footprint also involves reducing our exposure to unconventional hydrocarbons. We plan to update our exclusion policy in this area this year.

Rather than seeking to reduce as quickly as possible, we want to finance the actors of a just transition, in particular by adopting a commitment approach with issuers.
Sabine Castellan Poquet, Investment Director Macif - Aema group

Do you have a long-term objective of a 100% ESG allocation?

Our ESG strategy aims to cover all portfolios and asset classes. Every year, we make progress in the actions we put in place. For example, we already have almost 100% of our bond portfolio covered by ESG analysis, more than half of our funds which are Art 8 or 9 SFDR and 66% of the buildings in the portfolio are construction/renovation certified.

Do you delegate the management of your portfolio to management companies? Do you have profitability objectives for your portfolio? How has it performed in 2021?

Our portfolio is managed by our subsidiary OFI AM. On unlisted assets, we rely on SWEN CP and Zencap AM. And, for real estate assets, management is delegated to Aéma REIM. The performance was good in 2021 given strong market gains.

What will be your favorite subjects in the coming months? On which asset classes do you intend to position yourself?

We are a long-term investor and our vocation is to finance the real economy, in particular the energy transition. This transition must be fair and take into account social and societal aspects.

RF , April 26

Article also available in : English EN | français FR

Share
Send by email Email
Viadeo Viadeo

Focus

SRI CDC Climat, serving the economics of climate change

CDC Climat, a subsidiary of Caisse des Dépôts, develops carbon market services, invests in carbon assets and its research team conducts independent, neutral analyses for public authorities, market players and the general (...)

© Next Finance 2006 - 2022 - All rights reserved