Nordea has further expanded its emerging market debt range with the launch of an ESG-focused, corporate bonds fund for the team led by Thede Ruest.
The new fund, which is formally called Nordea Emerging Markets Stars Corporate Bond fund, sits within the Nordic group’s wider Stars range, which emphasises sustainable investment criteria.
The fund will be directly overseen by Sascha Stallberg as portfolio manager and Antonia Draghici as credit impact analyst. Stallberg joined the team as part of a push to develop an ‘EMD team 2.0’ in early 2020.
It will operate with a concentrated portfolio of between 70-100 issuers, aiming to focus on those deemed to have improved ESG scores versus the benchmark and an engagement process for transitioning issuers to higher degrees of sustainability.
Nordea said the fund will launch with three core pillars, which are:
- Companies with sustainable business models are deemed to have easier access to capital in the future and exclusion of investments that obstruct the UN SDGs;
- Bottom-up analysis designed to reduce credit risk, which combines ESG and financial analysis – and excludes ESG underperformers;
- A concentrated portfolio of sustainable companies offering competitive returns compared to broad market benchmarks over the medium term.
Commenting on the launch, Ruest, who is Citywire + rated and head of emerging market debt, said: ‘An active and sustainable approach is needed to build a future-proof EM Corporate Bond portfolio.’
Read More: Nordea unveils ESG-focused EM corporate debt fund