Insurance Asset Risk Awards 2021 - UK & Europe

Real asset manager of the Year - Aviva Investors

Aviva Investors is a well-established player in the real assets space with £48bn of UK and European real assets under management, including real estate equity and debt, infrastructure equity and debt, structured finance and private corporate debt.

Real assets have become a key component of insurers' portfolios as they search for alternatives to their traditional fixed income investments which have been plagued by low (sometimes negative) interest rates in recent years. Asset managers have been quick to react to this new trend and provide solutions to their insurance clients. But what sets Aviva Investors apart is the resilience of the offering, which has been unscathed by the COVID-19 disruption, and the sustainable nature of the investments.

The latter in particular caught judges' eyes, as they praised the Aviva affiliate for its commitment to the environmental, social and governance agenda, and its focus on the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

One judge highly commended Aviva Investors' "strong commitment to the transition of inefficient buildings to cleaner and more efficient ones" as the "'right thing to be doing in order to help reduce carbon emissions".

Another judge highlighted the asset manager's focuses on the "key aspects that require change and prioritisation now". And they echoed the other judges in praising Aviva Investors' ability to demonstrate a "clear linkage between the intentions of aligning to the SDG and the investment decisions made".