London – Sanlam Investments announces the external launch of its Sustainable Global Dividend Fund after receiving recent Article 8 approval. It is managed by Mark Whitehead and Alan Porter, who joined the firm from Martin Currie in December 2020.
The fund has built a track record over one year with £200m of internal money. The managers, veterans of sustainable income investing, use a bespoke sustainability scorecard, in addition to excluding companies with more than 10% exposure to alcohol, tobacco, gambling, weapons, adult entertainment, and fossil fuel extraction. The portfolio must hold an AA or AAA ESG rating from MSCI at all times.
Mark Whitehead, Manager of Sanlam’s Sustainable Global Dividend Fund said: “Societal shifts demonstrated by events over the past couple of years, have put climate change and sustainability at the top of the agenda for all. It’s an opportune time for funds focusing on the best sustainable, dividend-paying companies; and we mean sustainable in both senses of the word.”
The managers have a universe of 500 companies; those which in their view have exhibited attractive dividend growth and shown sustainable leadership. From that list, they undertake preliminary dividend and sustainability analysis and consider a potential investment thesis for each. This analysis produces an approved and refined stock list of around 50 companies, of which they will own 25-40. Current themes of interest include power management, buildings emissions and nutrition.
Mark Whitehead added: “We are seeing promising signs of strong dividend growth and company cash flows and balance sheets are strong. We expect in the region of 7% DPS growth over the next few years, at the portfolio level.”
Chris Rodgers, Head of Investment and Risk at Sanlam Investments, said: “The hire of Mark and Alan was instrumental to our strategy of developing a best in class range of specialist funds. The Sanlam Sustainable Global Dividend fund is the perfect vehicle for their expertise which combines dividend investing and sustainability.”