bfinance appoints Director, ESG & Responsible Investment

bfinance, an independent investment consultancy, has appointed Sarita Gosrani as ESG and Responsible Investment Director. 

Gosrani will head up bfinance’s new ESG advisory unit based in its London office and brings more than a decade of experience in financial services, pensions and investments.

Gosrani was formerly Head of ESG Research at XPS Pensions Group where she helped lead the firm’s approach to responsible investing and supported clients with integrating environmental, social and governance considerations into their investment strategies. Alongside this, she was responsible for developing proprietary asset manager research and monitoring frameworks to assess ESG across a range of asset classes. Sarita holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics and Human Geography from the University of Toronto, Canada. She will report to Duncan Higgs, Managing Director and Head of Portfolio Solutions at bfinance.

In addition, the firm has committed to supporting the goal of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or sooner in line with the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5c above pre-industrial levels. This commitment includes:

• working with asset owner clients to support Net Zero goals and strategies;
• integrating support with Net Zero ‘as standard’ into existing consulting services such as manager research and selection;
• pledging to establish appropriate emissions reduction targets across direct operations.

Gosrani represents bfinance’s first senior recruit solely dedicated to ESG matters. 

“We believe in keeping responsible investment matters firmly at the heart of the Research and Client Consulting teams, as has been the approach to date” says David Vafai, Chief Executive Officer, who also sits on the firm’s ESG and Responsible Investment Committee. “The creation of a dedicated ESG resource is intended to support and enhance the ESG-related work of those teams, as well as enabling us to offer some additional advisory support to clients.

“I am glad to welcome Sarita to the team – this new hire represents a notable expansion of the firm’s ESG capabilities. At the same time, we are excited to formalise the extensive work that we have been doing in supporting many clients on reducing the greenhouse gas emissions associated with their portfolios. Many investors are now seeking to identify asset managers with a robust strategy and transparency around emissions, for instance, or enter low-carbon or carbon-offsetting sectors such as renewable energy infrastructure.”

Gosrani says: “I’m delighted to join bfinance and work with such a diverse global client base at a time when investors’ ESG and responsible investment requirements are developing rapidly. With more and more of the investment industry presenting claims around ESG-related capabilities and carbon emissions, there is a real need to help asset owners cut through the noise to establish and implement a clear strategy.”