ESG statement

Robeco adopts a holistic approach to integrating sustainability into investment decisions. Sustainability is a long-term driver for change in markets, countries and companies, which in turn can impact future performance. Based on this belief, we consider sustainability to be one of the value drivers in our investment process, similar to the way we look at financials or market momentum. In our fixed income investment processes, sustainability is seen as a good indicator to protect against downside risk. In our equity investment processes, we also see it as a driver for outperformance.

This integrated approach to sustainable investing recognizes the importance of ESG integration across asset classes. From an investment perspective, considering material ESG factors strengthens our investment process and ultimately leads to a better-informed investment decision. Robeco has incorporated ESG criteria as part of the investment process since 1999.

Our integrated sustainability approach is based on three key elements – leading sustainability research, ESG integration and active ownership. Our research comes from multiple sources, including the bespoke sustainability expertise of our affiliate company RobecoSAM, along with our own analysts and specialists. Robeco incorporates all these insights into most investment strategies in a tailored way to generate better risk-adjusted returns. With our active ownership approach, we work with our investee companies to improve their performance on ESG through voting and engagement, the results of which enrich our ongoing research.

Sustainability Investing according to Robeco

We integrate environmental, social and governance criteria into the majority of our investment processes, for fundamental and quantitative strategies over a range of asset classes. At Robeco, we’re convinced that our approach leads to better-informed investment decisions, and is therefore vital in creating value for our clients. We are also an active owner and through our engagement and voting we influence companies to improve sustainability practices, thereby improving returns and benefitting society. We have a large number of sustainable, thematic and Impact funds.

Key points:

  • Robeco has incorporated ESG criteria as part of the investment process since 1999
  • In 2020 Robeco again achieved A+ scores for all PRI modules
  • EUR 177 billion is managed in ESG-integrated assets (June 2021)

Find out more about Robeco’s approach and wide range of sustainable investment solutions.





Does the investment manager have a policy addressing its approach to the incorporation of ESG factors within the investment process? If there is no policy, please explain why.
Please explain what steps have been taken to ensure ESG specialists have authority in the portfolio management process?

The way in which we incorporate extra-financial factors into our investment processes is tailored to the characteristics of each individual investment strategy.
Consistent application of sustainability requires rigorous frameworks and analysts with the right mindset, who can cross the cultural barriers between traditional investing and sustainability investing. After many years of working on ESG integration, most behavioral barriers have been cleared: our analysts are now well aware of the materiality of the various sustainability factors and the way they affect business models of companies. Moreover, they are in dialogue with the dedicated Sustainability analysts at RobecoSAM in their respective sectors, which results in high-quality analysis. Their consistent application of proprietary frameworks ensures that the most important factors are taken into account into our investment cases and investment decisions, which seriously reduces the risk of blind spots. Our fundamental analysts quantify the value of sustainability factors in their valuation models, which means that sustainability conviction directly affects target prices and recommendations.

Please explain how the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are integrated in the investment policy and decisions, if applicable.

As a signatory of the Dutch SDG Investing Agenda since 2016, Robeco continued its commitment to contribute to the SDGs. Robeco is also involved in various initiatives that investigate how the investment industry can contribute to the realization of SDGs.
Robeco and RobecoSAM contribute to the achievement of the SDGs with active ownership and dedicated SDG strategies, such as Global SDG Equities, Global SDG Credits, Euro SDG Credits and SDG Credit Income. These funds use a proprietary SDG framework to quantify the impact that companies have on the SDGs. It consists of a three-step approach as visualized below. Robeco’s analysts use this framework to determine the eligible investment universe for the SDG strategies. Eligibility is based on SDG scores assigned to each issuer.