Summit was the largest client event in firm history, reflecting accelerating interest in sustainable investing
July 8, 2020 - Drawing its largest audience ever for a client event, BlackRock convened its first Global Summit to explore the role of sustainability in investing and how it might help the global economy recover from the coronavirus pandemic.
The two-day virtual summit attracted approximately 3,000 investment professionals from 60 countries for in-depth conversations with senior BlackRock executives, corporate CEOs and leaders from other asset managers, nonprofits and pension funds on sustainability as a critical component of both investing and a more resilient economy. Broadcasting across time zones on June 23 & 24, the summit included 15 panels, 38 speakers and regional sessions tailored to clients in the Americas, EMEA and Asia Pacific seeking to answer a timely question: Can sustainability accelerate recovery?
Larry Fink, Chairman and CEO of BlackRock, delivered the keynote fireside chat, A Fundamental Reshaping of Finance, where he shared his thinking on why the coronavirus pandemic will accelerate investors' interest in sustainability and lead to more companies embracing stakeholder capitalism. Commenting on the summit he said:
'It was a pleasure to welcome to our virtual stage leading thinkers in sustainability and sustainable investing. As I wrote in January, it is BlackRock's conviction that climate risk is an investment risk. Since that time, we have also seen the tremendous toll of COVID-19, which has only reinforced the importance of building sustainable economies and investing for the long term.
'It was a privilege to share with so many BlackRock clients my perspectives on the need for every company to operate with a sense of purpose in focusing on all of their stakeholders. Our research1 tells us that companies built on sustainable foundations, will continue to be rewarded by the market over the long term.'
Deriving from BlackRock's conviction that sustainability-integrated portfolios can deliver better risk-adjusted returns and more resilient portfolios, the BlackRock Global Summit follows BlackRock's commitment to make sustainability its standard for investing. Featured sessions at the summit included: the growth and performance of sustainable investments, corporate governance, the circular economy, sustainability in retirement, the global energy transition, ESG integration into investment processes, and how senior corporate leaders and companies are incorporating sustainability into their businesses.
Among the highlights of the conference were contributions from many leaders across BlackRock and the broader investment community:
'Our investment conviction is that effectively managing material ESG risks in portfolios is essential to delivering better risk adjusted returns over the long-term. Our analysis of 32 globally-representative, widely analyzed sustainable indices shows that through multiple market downturns in 2015-2016, 2018 and earlier this year, the majority outperformed their non-sustainable counterparts, driven by a range of sustainability characteristics.1 COVID-19 didn't cause sustainability factors to outperform - it shined a spotlight on their increasing importance and relevance.' - Brian Deese, Global Head of BlackRock Sustainable Investing
'Sustainable investing is not a political movement or a values judgement. It's an investment philosophy that asks what's the best way to build an economy? What's the best way to build a resilient company and business? As it turns out, effectively managing your business for all stakeholders actually makes your business more resilient over the long term. As investors, if you don't incorporate sustainability into your investment process, you're actually not fulfilling your fiduciary duty to your clients.' - David Blood, co-founder and Senior Partner at Generation Investment Management
'We believe that sustainable companies are better positioned to generate long-term investment returns for our investors. We're committed to helping clients navigate society's transition to a more sustainable economy and will use our votes to hold companies to account when they are moving too slowly or when their disclosures lack compelling targets and a sensible business strategy to manage ESG risk and opportunities.' - Sandy Boss, Global Head of BlackRock Investment Stewardship
'As an asset owner, we have both the opportunity to allocate capital to sustainability solutions, where they meet our risk-return objectives, and the responsibility to use our influence with companies to avoid short-termism and drive more sustainable, long-term focused business practices. To be a good investor, you've got to understand how sustainability-related drivers are increasingly influencing the investment universe and our investment opportunities. Sustainable economic growth and sustainable investing are in the best interest of our investment returns and ultimately our beneficiaries, but also in the best interest of our global community and the environment.' - Kirsty Jenkinson, Head of Sustainable Investment & Stewardship Strategies at the California State Teachers' Retirement System
'There's vast economic potential if we shift towards a circular economy model. When you start to realize that circular opportunity, you also start to realize a massive environmental benefit. There's been a huge shift in businesses saying 'we need to fix this' and 'we can only do this if we collaborate.' Despite the uncertainty of the coronavirus crisis, there is a distinct opportunity there to rebuild things differently.' - Dame Ellen MacArthur, founder of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation
Participants also have access to on-demand content on sustainability, including BlackRock Investment Institute research, The Bid podcasts and BlackRock Bottom Line videos. BlackRock will share session replays and excerpts from the Global Summit at blackrock.com/sustainability.
BlackRock is committed to helping clients navigate the transition to a lower carbon economy by integrating sustainability into its investment process to build more resilient portfolios, creating innovative sustainable investment solutions that meet investors' needs and engaging with companies to improve sustainability disclosures and business practices.
As of March 31, 2020, BlackRock manages US$101 billion in our dedicated sustainable investment platform, including ESG outcome-oriented, sustainable thematic and impact funds across equities, fixed income and alternative investments. This includes US$65 billion in solutions that support the global energy transition. The firm offers more than 150 sustainable mutual funds and ETF solutions for clients, which represents the world's largest line-up of sustainable index products. We manage an additional US$481 billion of assets across BlackRock's broader platform that utilize environmental, social or governance screens.
1Sustainable investing: Resilience amid uncertainty
For selected journalists only.
This communication is for information purposes only and does not constitute a financial promotion, marketing communication or an offer or invitation to anyone to invest in any BlackRock funds and has not been prepared in connection with any such offer. Accordingly, this material does not constitute an offer or solicitation by anyone in any jurisdiction in which such offer or solicitation is not lawful or in which the person making such offer or solicitation is not qualified to do so or to anyone to whom it is unlawful to make such offer or solicitation. It is your responsibility to be aware of the applicable laws and regulations of your country of residence. This information is confidential and was prepared solely for the named recipient. It may not be used or published without the prior consent of BlackRock.
Until 31 December 2020, issued by BlackRock Investment Management (UK) Limited, authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered office: 12 Throgmorton Avenue, London, EC2N 2DL. Tel: + 44 (0)20 7743 3000. Registered in England and Wales No. 02020394. For your protection telephone calls are usually recorded. Please refer to the Financial Conduct Authority website for a list of authorised activities conducted by BlackRock. From 1 January 2021, in the event the United Kingdom and the European Union do not enter into an arrangement which permits United Kingdom firms to offer and provide financial services into the European Economic Area, the issuer of this material is: (i) BlackRock Investment Management (UK) Limited for all outside of the European Economic Area; and (ii) BlackRock (Netherlands) B.V. for in the European Economic Area, BlackRock (Netherlands) B.V. is authorised and regulated by the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets. Registered office Amstelplein 1, 1096 HA, Amsterdam, Tel: 020 - 549 5200, Tel: 31-20-549-5200. Trade Register No. 17068311 For your protection telephone calls are usually recorded.
In Australia, issued by BlackRock Investment Management (Australia) Limited ABN 13 006 165 975 AFSL 230 523 (BIMAL). This material is not a securities recommendation or an offer or solicitation with respect to the purchase or sale of any securities in any jurisdiction. It provides general information only and does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation, needs or circumstances. Before making any investment decision, you should therefore assess whether the material is appropriate for you and obtain financial advice tailored to you having regard to your individual objectives, financial situation, needs and circumstances. This material is not a securities recommendation or an offer or solicitation with respect to the purchase or sale of any securities in any jurisdiction. This material has not been prepared specifically for Australian investors. It may contain references to dollar amounts which are not Australian and may contain financial information which is not prepared in accordance with Australian law or practices. This material is not intended for distribution to, or use by any person or entity in any jurisdiction or country where such distribution or use would be contrary to local law or regulation. BIMAL is a part of the global BlackRock Group which comprises of financial product issuers and investment managers around the world. BIMAL is the issuer of financial products and acts as an investment manager in Australia.
In Hong Kong, this press release is issued by BlackRock Asset Management North Asia Limited. This press release and the BlackRock website mentioned herein have not been reviewed by the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong.
In Singapore, this material is issued by BlackRock (Singapore) Limited (company registration number: 200010143N). This publication has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
In Korea, this information is issued by BlackRock Investment (Korea) Limited. This material is for distribution to the Qualified Professional Investors (as defined in the Financial Investment Services and Capital Market Act and its sub-regulations) and for information or educational purposes only, and does not constitute investment advice or an offer or solicitation to purchase or sells in any securities or any investment strategies.
In Latin America and Iberia: this material is for educational purposes only and does not constitute investment advice nor an offer or solicitation to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy any shares of any Fund (nor shall any such shares be offered or sold to any person) in any jurisdiction in which an offer, solicitation, purchase or sale would be unlawful under the securities law of that jurisdiction. If any funds are mentioned or inferred to in this material, it is possible that some or all of the funds have not been registered with the securities regulator of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Portugal, Spain, Uruguay or any other securities regulator in any Latin American country and thus might not be publicly offered within any such country. The securities regulators of such countries have not confirmed the accuracy of any information contained herein.
BlackRock México, S.A. de C.V., Asesor en Inversiones Independiente ('BlackRock México') is a Mexican subsidiary of BlackRock, Inc., registered with the National Banking and Securities Commission (Comisión Nacional Bancaria y de Valores, 'CNBV') as an independent investment advisor (asesor en inversiones independiente) under the registration number 30088-001-(14085)-20/04/2017, thus authorized to render Investment Advisory Services. The registration of BlackRock Mexico in the Investment Advisors Registry (Registro de Asesores en Inversiones) does not imply certification on the compliance by the investment advisors with the applicable laws and regulations or the accuracy or correctness of the information contained herein. Please note that the CNBV exclusively oversees the provision of securities portfolio management services when making investment decisions in the name and on behalf of third parties, as well as services consisting in providing individualized investment advice on Securities, and the analysis and issuance of individualized investment recommendations, thus it is not entitled to supervise or regulate any other services provided by investment advisers.
Investment involves risks. Past performance is not a guide to future performance and should not be the sole factor of consideration when selecting a product. All financial investments involve an element of risk. Therefore, the value of your investment and the income from it will vary and your initial investment amount cannot be guaranteed. Capital at risk. The value of investments and the income from them can fall as well as rise and is not guaranteed. You may not get back the amount originally invested. Changes in the rates of exchange between currencies may cause the value of investments to diminish or increase. Fluctuation may be particularly marked in the case of a higher volatility fund and the value of an investment may fall suddenly and substantially. Levels and basis of taxation may change from time to time.
The views expressed do not constitute investment or any other advice and are subject to change. They do not necessarily reflect the views of any company in the BlackRock or any part thereof and no assurances are made as to their accuracy.
© 2020 BlackRock, Inc. All Rights reserved. All other trademarks are those of their respective owners. BLACKROCK, BLACKROCK SOLUTIONS, iSHARES, BUILD ON BLACKROCK, SO WHAT DO I DO WITH MY MONEY and the stylized i logo are registered and unregistered trademarks of BlackRock, Inc. or its subsidiaries in the United States and elsewhere. All other trademarks are those of their respective owners.