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#67 Stephen Fitzgerald: Green bonds, impact reporting and farming in Sussex

#67 Stephen Fitzgerald: Green bonds, impact reporting and farming in Sussex

On this episode, we’re talking about Green Bonds, with Stephen Fitzgerald. Stephen is the founder of Affirmative Investment Management, a specialist firm that manages impact bonds. Their pure-play approach makes Green Bonds, Social bonds and sustainability bonds available to more investors. Its impact investing without compromising on returns.

Stephen has a lot of insights to share, from the early days of his career at Goldman Sachs, as well as roles as Chair of the Investment Committee for the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, he’s on the investment committee of the British Museum, and serves on the board QBE and chairing the investment committee.

On this episode…

We explore the world of bonds and fixed income. Stephen explains that Green Bonds are no different to regular bonds, except they clearly define what the funds raised must be used for.

He explains the rigour with which his team report on the impact of the projects they fund, with a bottom-up approach that offers investors an unprecedented insight into the impact of their portfolio.

Stephen is committed to impact, evidenced in his work with foundations, and over to his farm in Sussex.

My key takeaways this week…

“I became more and more interested in the ability to mobilise capital for purpose. But I recognised you can only mobilise mainstream capital, by delivering mainstream returns.”

“A Green, Social or sustainability bond, is just a bond. It’s generally the senior debt of the issuer, it pays a fixed or floating coupon, and it matures at par.”

“The more insightful clients are not creating a new category within their portfolio allocation for impact. They’re investing in impact from their existing investment buckets.”

“To my mind, this is the future of investing. If you can deliver mainstream returns, and impact, why wouldn’t you make that investment.”

Good Future’s Good Books

Surviving New England

By Calum Clayton Dixon

I’m from Armidale in NSW. There is a project that I have supported. They’re trying to create a dictionary of the language of the indigenous people, of the area. My book recommendation is going to be, Surviving New England, by Calum Clayton Dixon.

Links

Affirmative

QBE – Premiums for Good

Great Barrier Reef Foundation

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