HESTA’s Game-Changing Investment into Sustainable PE Fund

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HESTA’s commitment to sustainability goes beyond its operations and touches the wider community, as evidenced by its game-changing investment in a sustainable private equity fund.

Stafford Capital Partners and HESTA’s

To support sustainability, Superannuation fund HESTA has pledged $US200 million ($290.6 million) towards its 12-year private equity investment program with Stafford Capital Partners – formerly chaired by ex-IFM Investors CEO Brett Himbury.

As a result of recent exits, the cheque recycling program has returned funds and expanded its total size to $US450 million ($654 million), which was invested into around 50 businesses. HESTA allocated these resources through their “HESTA Sustainable Growth” investment option, which is generally set at 4 per cent for private equity investments.

“We are continuously exploring possibilities to invest in solutions that drive the transition towards a more sustainable and lower carbon future,” Sonya Sawtell-Rickson, HESTA’s Chief Investment Officer, remarked.

“Using private equity investments, we are aiding vanguard organisations to expand and enhance their operations to make sustainability solutions more accessible for the public. This allows us to deliver strong returns for HESTA members over time while directly contributing towards achieving global sustainable development goals,” continued Sonya Sawtell-Rickson.

According to Kurt Faulhaber, a partner at Stafford Private Equity, the firm actively searches for deals that could attract interest from its superannuation fund partners.

“We believe that the most captivating sectors to watch in the upcoming year will be those of clean energy, climate change and healthcare/life sciences,” Mr Faulhaber said.

“One company in this portfolio that stands out is an industrial business committed to creating cleaner air by optimising filtration processes and providing green electricity. Additionally, the life sciences companies include those devoted to immunology, neurology and researching COVID biology,” he said.

He highlighted healthcare as the most engaging sector for dealmaking.

“Our venture capital program, known for being cautious and conservative, has recently seen a surge in healthcare opportunities – particularly those related to genomics, periodontics and medical tools. Five years ago, these deals were improbable for us; however, now they are plentiful!” Mr Faulhaber said.

“Now, some of the most successful investment opportunities can be found through venture capital, allowing you to invest via private equity patterns.”

HESTA’s investment in this sustainable PE fund is certainly a game-changer, enabling it to pursue sustainability more than ever. It has also provided an avenue for venture capital and private equity investments that can achieve substantial returns while helping to advance global sustainable development goals.

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