The new fund launched today: Thematics Wellness
Mr. Amor, how do you define wellness and did you came on with this investment theme?
Wellness could be defined as the state of being healthy in body and mind as a result of deliberate effort. The rationale for the wellness strategy is rooted in the fact that increasingly health conscious individuals globally are actively seeking to make healthier choices in response to today’s fast-paced, time poor lifestyles.
The idea for the Wellness fund began 18 months ago, prior to the coronavirus pandemic, driven in part by our research into the primary forces shaping our society. And as the world resets in the aftermath of a global pandemic, it has never been clearer that a focus on mental health, physical activity and diet are among the most effective ways to prevent chronic diseases.
We’re proud to add Thematics Wellness to our range. This new theme has great potential for long-term growth, with the rise of health-conscious consumers who are actively seeking to make healthier choices regarding exercise, diet, self-care and looking after their downtime and mental health, commented individuals are increasingly focused on being healthy in body and mind, a long-term trend that we anticipated some time ago and that has rapidly accelerated due to the global health pandemic. The stakes are high. We all need to play along.
What are the key trends behind the wellness theme?
We believe long term secular growth will come from several sources:
There is a clear demographic driver within this fund. Enlightened, connected individuals are investing more in their long-term health through gym memberships, fitness equipment and healthier dining experiences, supported by government and corporate subsidies. Moreover, we have an older population who will live longer thanks to healthier eating habits, and as a result, will continue to consume healthier products and services.
Technology innovation has facilitated the development of apps and wearables to track and monitor our health, but also improve products such as glasses and hearing aids. Equally, technology has transformed sustainable agricultural food, with vertical farming and dairy free food options and meat free protein - technology developments which are only going to improve over time. These markets are also outpacing the growth rates of traditional markets and allowing the consumer to focus on local, organic and healthier options.
That being said, the events of the last year have put a clear focus on the importance of mental health, physical health and diet. Maintaining health across these three things is proven to be the most effective ways to prevent chronic diseases. For example, evidence shows that 30 minutes of activity five days a week decreases the risk of falling and dying from an infectious disease by 37 percent.
Overall, the strategy is focused on the notion of prevention rather than cure.
Who will be managing Thematics Wellness?
The fund will be co-managed by Marine Dubrac, who joins Thematics AM from Candriam where she was an ESG Thematic Portfolio Manager, and by Pierre-Alexis François, who has been promoted to Portfolio Manager.
In a few words, how would you describe Thematics AM’s ESG approach?
Thematic investing is about having a long-term focus and identifying the «winners» of tomorrow, which are the companies that benefit from long-term, secular growth drivers. All of our funds already place an emphasis on integrating ESG considerations throughout the investment decision-making process - from negative screening, to scoring companies in the investable universe and sizing positions, to active ESG risk monitoring, but also through engagement & voting. Our approach is not only exclusionary; ESG is integrated at the very heart of our investment philosophy.
The Wellness fund is classified as Article 9 under the new EU SFDR regulation. As recent recipients of the French ISR Label, and as signatories of the UNPRI, this fund will remain consistent to SDG 3, namely to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.
Our ambition is to continue to strengthen our commitment in the field of responsible investment, which has been a key feature of our process since we established the Company. We are long-term by design in our investment style, have high-conviction and are in close alignment with our clients’ interest and values. We are convinced that integrating ESG and maintaining an active ownership approach are critical to enhancing returns and better managing risk over the long term.
How has the Thematics AM business grown over the last two years?
Thematics AM’s approach finds growing resonance with investors looking for purpose and perspective. We are thrilled by the interest received from investors so far. Thematics AM has grown rapidly since its inception, with its current Assets under Management (AuM) totalling 4 bn US-Dollars. Our team has expanded from six founding partners in 2019 to a team of investment professionals with 20 members in 2021, including 11 portfolio managers, an ESG specialist, a product specialist and research, back office and support functions.
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Mohammed Amor is one of the founders and owners of Thematics Asset Management. He is Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Thematics Asset Management. He has nine years of experience. He began his career in 2010 as a Sales Representative at Derivatives Capital, a brokerage firm specialized in structured products. He joined Turgot Asset Management in 2013, as Head of retail. In 2014, he joined Pictet Asset Management, where he covered retail, banks and networks in France. Mohammed Amor holds a Master degree from Ecole de Management de Grenoble.