New Ethical Investment Funds Launching On The Mindful Money Platform

5th April 2022

Responsible and Ethical investing is taking a huge leap forward with a new wave of innovative funds now available to New Zealand investors.

This article originally featured on Scoop and was written by Mindful Money. 

Responsible and Ethical investing is taking a huge leap forward with a new wave of innovative funds now available to New Zealand investors.

Mindful Money’s Founder and CEO said: “We are excited to announce the designation of 17 additional funds in the category of ‘Mindful Funds’ - these meet the high standards for inclusion on the Mindful Money website as ethical funds.

The Mindful Funds badge is a reliable way to identify ethical investment options and get beyond greenwashing and misleading claims. It is an objective standard so investors can have confidence that their money is being managed according to ethical principles.”

“These new Mindful Funds go well beyond screening investments to avoid harm. Most of them also influence companies towards higher social and environmental standards. And they all allocate funds towards companies that are making a positive impact in New Zealand and internationally. These funds are contributing to an exciting new wave of ethical investing.”

TAHITO Te Tai o Rahua

For the first time, investors have the option to invest in a fund that integrates te Ao Māori principles. This is a hugely important step forward, building in long term thinking, stewardship and a holistic approach to investment.

The co-Founder of TAHITO, Temuera Hall explained: “Our TAHITO Te Tai o Rehua Fund starts to come into its own as investment consciousness increases and investors request more transparency and accountability on where and how their funds are invested.”

“We have set a high sustainable and ethical bar premised upon our indigenous Māori values. Our challenge is to maintain and improve this standard.”

Kernel Wealth

Kernel Wealth is extending the range of options available to investors in Aotearoa New Zealand. For the first time, there are now funds that are dedicated to investing in climate action, such as through renewable energy and EVs. This is a huge step forward for those who want their investments to be part of the solution to climate change, not exacerbating the problem.

Co-founder and CEO of Kernel, Dean Anderson commented: “The world is moving at pace, and Kernel is looking to the future – not the past. We have proudly developed the first EV fund on offer in NZ, and in fact one of the first in the world.”

“We didn’t stop there, we’ve been working behind the scenes for two years in supporting the world's largest index provider, S&P Dow Jones Indices, to develop and launch the first official ESG NZ equity index fund, a significant milestone for New Zealand and all investors. We are very excited to be recognised for these innovations and to be joining an equally innovative and tech enabled solution, Mindful Money, which is helping progress the conversation on sustainable and ESG investing in New Zealand.”

Generate KiwiSaver

Generate has played a hugely important role in demonstrating that mainstream funds can devote part of their portfolio to investments that have a positive impact. Their pioneering investment in social housing, supporting Salvation Army’s social housing bond, has supported homes for those in need and has encouraged other investment providers to contribute funding.

Sam Goldwater, Lead Portfolio Manager and Executive Director of Generate KiwiSaver explained: “Investing in a way that incorporates environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues and produces attractive long-term returns has always been fundamental to how Generate operates. We believe that companies who proactively manage ESG issues are not only doing the right thing, but are more future-focussed and will ultimately deliver better returns for our members.“

“We’re thrilled that Generate’s funds have been recognised as ‘Mindful Funds’ and are available on the Mindful Money website, so Kiwis can easily find a KiwiSaver or Managed Fund that aligns with their values.”

Medical Assurance Society (MAS)

Until recently, access to MAS funds were restricted to health care workers and their families. MAS has now opened its investment funds up to the public. They have defined their mission as “inspiring a healthier Aotearoa New Zealand”. Their funds are a very welcome addition to the ethical investments available to the public.

Colin Thomson, MAS Head of Investments commented: “We’re grateful that Mindful Money has awarded all our KiwiSaver Scheme and Retirement Savings Scheme funds with mindful status. This endorsement demonstrates how MAS is living up to its purpose of inspiring a healthier Aotearoa by helping our members avoid harm, influence positive change, and make an impact through their KiwiSaver account.”

“The recognition from Mindful Money places us amongst a small group of responsible investment leaders in Aotearoa and builds on our other credentials, including our certification from the Responsible Investment Association of Australasia and signatory status to the United Nations Principles of Responsible Investment. We are committed to developing our approach to responsible investing further to help all Kiwis do well by doing good.”

Harbour Asset Management

Two additional funds from award-winning Harbour Asset Management will be added to the list of Mindful Funds. Harbour was the winner of the Best Ethical Investment Provider award last year at the Mindful Money Awards.

Harbour Asset Management Executive Director Ainsley McLaren says “We’re delighted to see the continued growth in ethical investing, and appreciate the work Mindful Money is doing in this space to make it accessible and understandable for Kiwi investors. Sustainability is a core part of Harbour’s kaupapa so we’re proud to have this work recognised, with two more of our funds gaining the Mindful Funds designation.”

Mindful Money founder and CEO, Barry Coates: “These funds are exciting additions to the Mindful Money platform. There is now a wider range of choice available to the growing numbers of investors who want their funds to do good and earn good returns.”