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Allianz Global Investors, an asset manager of the German insurer, has launched a sustainability data platform following the growth in volume and complexity of reporting such data by companies.
The active manager said more companies now provide disclosures on environmental, social and corporate governance, but the choice and style of data being integrated is still evolving. In addition, it said the complexity of such disclosures will result in “an even more challenging data system to report and understand”.
It added: “A scattered data landscape requires the need for a system to properly structure, compute and use sustainability data.”
Developed in-house by a dedicated team, AllianzGI’s Sustainability Insights Engine is a web-based user interface that computes external ESG data from multiple providers as well as AllianzGI proprietary scores and research inputs.
The data is then cleaned, processed and standardised into one data set that is distributed to all systems including front office, research, compliance, risk and client reporting tools.
“The world of ESG data is growing in volume and complexity,” said Matt Christensen, global head of sustainable and impact investment at AllianzGI.
He added: “A strong proprietary data architecture, which embraces change and innovation, will be critical in driving sustainability insights, investment decision making and achieving non-financial outcomes alongside financial returns – the launch of SusIE is a game changer for us”.
The insurance industry is aware of the lack of good quality of data as a main challenge for ESG reporting, but Olivia Brindle, head of sustainability at specialty re/insurer Fidelis, urged peers to “start from somewhere” even though data is not perfect.
“What we hear from a lot of our peers [is]… they think the data is not perfect. It holds them back from starting with something. As an industry, we need to accept the starting point is not perfect,” she said during a conference by Fitch in London on 1 February.
Do re/insurers find it easier to report ESG data on the asset or liability side of the balance sheet?