Leiden University Fund.

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Asset management

Sustainability has undeniably acquired greater importance in our society. LUF also has a role to play in this context, and, in addition to our grants, we can impact sustainability themes through our investments. In recent years, we have improved our sustainability policy and focused our portfolio on SFDR Article 8*.

The principles of sustainable investment policy are anchored in our investment policy. In addition to financial criteria, our investment policy specifies that investments are to be made on the basis of non-financial sustainability criteria.

Our sustainable policy is based on the following principles:

  • Fill portfolio with companies at the forefront of sustainability
  • Apply exclusion based on international standards, conventions, and guidelines
  • Have portfolio analysed for sustainability by internationally renowned external MSCI ESG party
  • Invest in sustainable funds of investment manager and external fund providers
  • Try to align sustainability features of the portfolio as much as possible with the sustainability characteristics of the Leiden University Fund Foundation and Leiden University

As indicated in our annual financial report, LUF is committed to a sustainable portfolio that scores high on Environmental, Social, & Governance (ESG) criteria. Our investment portfolio therefore combines exclusion, best-in-class, active share ownership, and impact investments to bring about positive change. With our exclusion policy, we avoid investments in companies that are active in the tobacco industry, controversial weapons, and other controversial activities, among others. The best-in-class policy helps us to invest in companies that score above average in terms of sustainability within their sector. In short, we apply an investment policy in which we actively pursue ESG-responsible investments and achieve long-term returns.

Attention for climate

Climate is a crucial theme when it comes to the sustainability of our investment portfolio. Our portfolio aims to reduce CO2 emissions by selecting funds with lower carbon emissions than other comparable funds, and that have fully integrated ESG criteria into their investment policy. We also invest in investment funds that actively contribute to sustainability challenges through their investments.

We have delegated our asset management to Van Lanschot Kempen through a discretionary investment mandate based on our investment policy. We recently strengthened our sustainability policy and selected the ‘highly engaged’ investment profile (see the Van Lanschot website (in Dutch) for the precise characteristics of this profile).

Regular review

Van Lanschot Kempen periodically tests investment funds on their sustainability policy, and checks that companies meet the sustainability criteria associated with the chosen investment profile. They do the same for other direct investments, bonds, or investment categories.

* European laws and regulations increasingly focus on redirecting capital flows towards sustainable investments. Their goal: sustainable and inclusive growth, as well as sustainability as a standard aspect of risk management. The EU Sustainable Finance Disclose Regulations (SFDR) aims to provide more transparency to end customers of financial intermediaries.

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