Leading asset manager DWS announced today at its annual general meeting (AGM) a commitment to achieve climate neutrality in its actions. The company said that its new sustainability goal is in line with the Paris Agreement, and set a timeline ahead of that set out in the Accord.

In his speech at the company’s AGM, Asoka Woehrmann, CEO of DWS, said:

“DWS is committed to becoming climate-neutral in its actions – in line with the Paris Agreement – and well ahead of the timeline officially set out in the Agreement. This will not happen overnight, but will only succeed in close and ongoing dialogue and exchange with clients, regulators and stakeholders.”

Woehrmann outlined the significant impact ESG factors are having on the investment industry, along with the ongoing momentum in ESG investment products, solutions and services. In his speech, he noted:

“(ESG) has developed enormously and strongly, especially in the fund management business. While sustainable investment products were inferior in performance to their non-sustainable mirror products just a few years ago, we no longer see this in the data today. On the contrary.”

Woehrmann described sustainability as a moral imperative at DWS, outlining the asset manager’s progress and initiatives in the ESG space over the past year, including increasing the range of ESG investing products offered by the firm, and the recent appointment of Desiree Fixler, as Group Sustainability Officer. DWS also announced last week the establishment of an ESG Advisory Board, consisting of six highly recognised international sustainability experts that will actively advise the CEO and the Executive Board of DWS on the acceleration of its ESG strategy.

Woehrmann added:

“It is also clear that our definition of sustainability encompasses more than just climate action; it includes topics of good corporate governance and social justice. However, tackling climate change is a collective task for this generation, and one to which we are happy to commit ourselves. This is also because we believe in growth potential for DWS and because we want to be a leader among asset managers in the field of ESG.”