With the challenges the world is now facing, we must swiftly transition to a more resilient and sustainable economy. Pictet has long believed that the financial system has a role to play in this transition — investing in those firms committed to building a better future, engaging with issuers and other stakeholders and advocating for positive change through partnerships.
We have to embrace new models that are based on solid science and innovative partnerships and also take account of environmental, social and governance factors in investment decisions and active ownership practices.
It also means further developing solutions that redirect capital flows to issuers best positioned to tackle these challenges.
Before 2025, we want to:
- Significantly reduce the environmental impact of our activities and investments.
- Fully integrate ESG factors and active ownership into all investment processes.
- Be a leading provider of responsible products and solutions.
10 levers of action
To achieve our ambitions, we have identified 10 key levers of action across our activities, including both our own and our clients’ assets. We are convinced these will make us better investors and corporate citizens and help us play our part in designing a thriving system for future generations.
1. Investing our balance sheet
As we have full control over our balance sheet, we de-fossilised our portfolio in 2020. This includes our corporate treasury as well as seed investments.
2. Employee engagement to foster responsibility
Our employees are our most crucial asset and a key amplifier when it comes to sustainability and responsibility. We continue to engage with our colleagues on sustainability topics and encourage them to participate in local initiatives.
3. Managing our environmental impact
In our own business activities we take proactive steps to cut our carbon footprint by employing cutting edge building technology, reviewing every aspect of our operations and reducing the environmental impacts of our infrastructure.
As the ultimate “risk capital”, philanthropy can be an important part of tackling some of the world’s most intractable problems. Through our initiatives and supported projects, we seek to stimulate action on environmental and social issues.
5. Advocacy and partnerships
We strive to engage across stakeholders in advancing sustainability and leveraging our influence through key partnerships. Pictet is signatory to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment across our businesses and employee pension fund, as well as the UN Global Compact and Net Zero Asset Managers initiative. Our key partnerships include Ceres (water), IIGCC (climate change), Building Bridges (sustainable finance), FAIRR (nutrition).
6. ESG integration into investment processes and risk management
Our ambition is to integrate material sustainability considerations across our activities, including research, investment decisions and risk management. To this end, we have built an ESG portal that consolidates information from a suite of third-party data providers and includes a sustainability due diligence questionnaire for third-party fund selection.
7. Responsible products and solutions
We continue to develop investment strategies that provide capital to the companies providing solutions to social and environmental issues. We also support those companies transitioning their business activities for greater resilience and sustainability.
8. Active ownership
We strive to engage with issuers that are able to transition to more sustainable models – either directly or through investor collaborations. Where necessary, we will escalate to board representatives, vote against management or support shareholder resolutions. Depending on the severity of the concern and the issuers’ capacity or willingness to adopt generally accepted standards of best practice, we may choose to sell the investment.
9. Client disclosure
Where relevant data are available, we strengthen reporting on the ESG characteristics of client portfolios and the impact of active ownership activities. Where data are missing, we encourage issuers to report according to international standards. When relevant, we report on our strategies’ exposure to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and Planetary boundaries.
10. Research and Thought-leadership
We will use our substantial experience across key environmental and social themes to publish targeted research and help raise awareness and capital for a sustainable transition.
Our approach to responsibility
Our actions to tackle climate change
It is our fiduciary responsibility to play an active role in accelerating the transition of the global economy towards a net-zero emissions future in line with the climate science. Pictet contributes to tackling climate change through a set of business and investment targets, supported by initiatives across our 10 levers of action.
The Pictet Group Foundation
As a responsible actor, we support impactful societal and environmental initiatives, mainly in the field of Water and Nutrition, through the Pictet Group Foundation, which provides a corporate framework for the Group’s philanthropic activities.
The Pictet Group Foundation strives to improve the lives and well-being of the most vulnerable, fostering a more resilient and sustainable future for all. It supports projects that help mitigate pressing challenges for the environment and youth.
The partners of the Pictet Group created the Prix Pictet prize to draw worldwide attention to and stimulate action on issues of sustainability through the medium of photography.
A focus on environmental themes
To date, there have been nine cycles of the award, each of which has highlighted a particular facet of sustainability, beginning with Water, followed by Earth, Growth, Power, Consumption, Disorder, Space, Hope, and Fire.
About the photographs on this page
On 20 April 2010, BP’s Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, killing eleven crew-men and injuring seventeen, making it the world’s largest marine oil spill. More than 600 miles of coastline were affected and still show lingering signs of oil and dispersant. Layers of crude oil are spread thick on the ocean floor, radiating far from the wellhead site. Scientists have determined that up to 75 per cent of the oil from BP’s disaster remains in the Gulf environment.
Daniel Beltrá was born in 1964 in Madrid, Spain. His passion for conservation is evident in images of our environment that are evocatively poignant. In 2011 he received the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award for his work on the Gulf Oil Spill. His images published on this page were shortlisted for the fourth cycle of the Prix Pictet Power in 2012.