Group Retirement Plan Offering Is Focused on ESG

The product was launched through a recordkeeper, third-party administrator, and investment manager partnership.

Transamerica has partnered with Ascensus, Natixis Investment Managers and LeafHouse Financial Advisors to introduce a target-date fund product focused on environmental, social and governance investments.

The partnered product, Sustainable Futures ESG Group Plan Solution, is a group retirement plan offering that aims to simplify retirement plan sponsorship for employers by reducing time-intensive administrative tasks and mitigating fiduciary risk, the companies say. 

“The Sustainable Futures ESG Group Plan Solution allows employers and their financial consultants who seek an ESG approach to lighten the administrative and fiduciary burdens of sponsoring a retirement plan,” says Darren Zino, senior managing director of U.S. Retirement Distribution at Transamerica. “This benefit allows them to focus on their business growth while offering a crucial benefit to their employees.”

Transamerica serves as the recordkeeper, Ascensus’ FuturePlan the third-party administrator and 3(16) plan administrator, and LeafHouse Financial Advisors 3(38) fiduciary investment manager.

The TDFs include Natixis’ Sustainable Future Funds. The offering is open to existing and start-up 401(k) plans.

It was launched to provide retirement plan advisers and plan sponsors with guided onboarding and enrollment support, and ongoing service from Ascensus, the companies say.

The product includes an integrated 100-point payroll data integrity check, which was designed to prevent most common errors flagged in Department of Labor and IRS audits. Participating employers will have access to the Ascensus’ FuturePlan Fiduciary Assistant program, which works in conjunction with Transamerica-approved payroll vendors.

Investors’ growing social awareness tops the list for increased demand from investors for ESG investments, and 86% of fund selectors plan to maintain or increase their ESG offering, according to Natixis Investment Managers’ 2021 ESG Investor Insight Report.

“Investment professionals are increasingly incorporating ESG data into their investment process, and plan participants are indicating a strong preference for choices that are sustainable, responsible or ESG driven,” says Liana Magner, executive vice president and Head of Retirement and Institutional in the U.S. at Natixis Investment Managers. “We are committed to helping plan advisors understand the crucial role ESG can play in retirement plans, and we’re pleased to partner with Transamerica in making it even easier for investment professionals to have access to ESG options in their retirement plans.”