Triodos Sustainable Pioneer Fund

Equities covered by the Climate Protection theme were the strongest performers in 2015. Wind turbine manufacturers benefited from a strong order flow and an improvement in margins and cash flow. Share prices of solar panel manufacturers were volatile, but ended the year higher. The positive impact of the favourable outcome of the Paris climate conference and the tax credit extension for investments in sustainable energy in the US ultimately outweighed the negative effect of the falling oil price. SunEdison saw its share price fall because investors were concerned about the increased financial risks entailed by announced takeovers. LED manufacturers disappointed. The sub-fund sold existing positions and reinvested the proceeds in Acuity Brands (lighting systems). Universal Display registered a sharp share price rise, partly due to the fact that Apple is expected to switch to OLED screens for its iPhone in 2018.

In the Healthy People theme medical technology stocks outperformed. Particularly strong performers were Ion Beam Applications, Gerresheimer and Edwards Lifesciences. The positions in Medtronic and Sonova were sold. The proceeds were reinvested in companies such as NxStage Medical (home dialysis equipment), Dentsply International (dental products) and ResMed (medical equipment for sleep apnoea sufferers). The share price performances of companies focusing on organic food disappointed. Share prices fell in reaction to disappointing earnings growth figures and increasing competition in their sales markets. An exception to this rule was Wessanen. Favourable results published by the company resulted in a substantial share price rise.

Breakdown by country as at December 31, 2015*

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Country

% of net assets

 

 

*

Source: RBC Investor Services Bank

United States

62.4

Spain

4.4

Germany

4.1

Canada

3.9

Cayman Islands

3.5

Denmark

3.3

Switzerland

2.6

Belgium

2.4

Netherlands

2.4

Others

10.1

 

 

Breakdown by theme as at December 31, 2015*
(as a % of total assets)

Triodos Sustainable Pioneer Fund – Breakdown by theme (pie chart)

In the Clean Planet theme many companies focusing on recycling and water purification lagged behind the benchmark. Chinese water stocks made attractive gains, especially as a result of growing political attention for improving air and water quality. Sound Global was an exception, as the company’s listing was suspended because of suspected accounting irregularities. The positions in Pentair and CECO Environmental were sold. The proceeds were reinvested in stocks covered by the Climate Protection theme.

In the CSR Pioneer theme Tesla Motors benefited from the announcement of its new energy storage system (‘Powerwall’) and better-than-expected reports about vehicle deliveries. Strong quarterly figures also led to relatively strong share price performances for Kingspan and Red Hat. Chipotle Mexican Grill was a disappointing performer, mainly due to the closure of a number of restaurants after it was found that customers had contracted an E.coli infection.

Top 10 holdings, December 31, 2015*

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Name

Country

Theme

% of net assets

 

 

 

 

*

Source: RBC Investor Services Bank

First Solar

United States

Climate Protection

3.8

Tesla Motors

United States

CSR Pioneer

3.4

Edwards Lifesciences

United States

Healthy People

3.4

Vestas Wind

Denmark

Climate Protection

3.3

SunPower

United States

Climate Protection

3.1

PerkinElmer

United States

Healthy People

3.0

Acuity Brands

United States

Climate Protection

2.9

WhiteWave Foods

United States

CSR Pioneer

2.9

Xylem

United States

Clean Planet

2.5

Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica

Spain

Climate Protection

2.4

 

 

 

 

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