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Impact data firm GIST receives strategic investment from FNZ 

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Published on: May 20 2022

Global wealth management platform FNZ has announced it has made an strategic investment in impact data and analytics provider GIST, as part of a wider partnership between the two firms

GIST measures and values corporate impacts in monetary terms based on the ‘four capitals’ framework – natural, human, social and produced capital | Photo by grapestock on iStock

GIST, an impact data and analytics company, has received an undisclosed strategic investment from wealth management platform FNZ, which is also integrating GIST’s sustainability data into its FNZ Impact sustainable investment solution, as part of a wider partnership between the two firms.   

GIST says it aims to overcome problems in interpreting current ESG ratings and rankings due to biases and a lack of standardisation, transparency, independence and credible information.  

The company measures and values corporate impacts in monetary terms based on the ‘four capitals’ framework – natural, human, social and produced capital – used by the United Nations and others to evaluate performance and report on impact.  

GIST says its monetised impact values can also be mapped to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to help investors assess how much a company’s activities have contributed to each of the SDGs. 

“FNZ’s funding will turbo-charge GIST’s objectives to mainstream our solutions and enable more and more investors and corporations to measure performance across all value dimensions, manage material risks, and make more informed decisions,” Pavan Sukhdev, founder & CEO of GIST, told Impact Investor.

Wealth management

The investment builds on an existing collaboration between the two companies, as part of which GIST’s sustainability data is being integrated into the FNZ Impact sustainable investment solution, which already has its own ESG database.  

FNZ Impact is part of the FNZ wealth management platform, which supports over 650 of the world’s leading financial institutions and 8,000 wealth management firms in 21 countries, according to FNZ.  

The platform provides clients with personalised information relating to environmental and social impacts of investment portfolios. It also enables users to optimise portfolios based on personal preferences and values, as well as risk appetite, goals and tax considerations. 

High-net-worth individuals and family offices have become increasingly demanding of their asset managers keen to see portfolio sustainability, as well as earning returns, according to GIST’s Sukhdev, who said these investors wanted the “right” returns, from investments that did not damage nature and climate, or create social issues. 

“They are asking us the same questions that thoughtful sustainability managers at asset managers were asking a few years ago,” he said. 

Using impact data for wealth management in this way could lead to wider adoption in the general retail space. 

“There is much interest in self-education on this area amongst millennials and Gen-Z. Some  new broking and retail platforms are already looking at our frameworks, and so it would not surprise me that these interests escalate as soon as the mainstream wealth management sphere begins to use impact data though our combined efforts,” Sukhdev said.