Looking at ESG’s “big picture” up close

ESG Advisory

How you can keep sustainability considerations in mind when investing—without getting lost in the details.

ESG Advisory from A to Z

Today, investors’ goals and the world’s need for action—the big pictureare clearer than ever. And the answer to the question “Why sustainability?” has not been this unanimous since the early 90s. However, when you get into the details, the complexity of the matter grows, as does the question of how sustainability and investment can be brought together: “How can I take sustainability criteria into account in my investments while making sure my needs are met?”

Find out in this article how we can support you.  


Identify opportunities, avoid mistakes

Nowadays, companies that operate responsibly represent more than just a “feel-good” investment opportunity. Taking ESG criteria into account when selecting your investments can help you better assess risks and make better investment decisions.

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ESG: three letters for sustainability

Letter E in ESG - a man riding his bike

E is for Environmental


The “E” in ESG focuses on companies’ environmental aspects. These include factors such as:

  • greenhouse gas emissions, including those from production and from products themselves,
  • compliance with environmental standards,
  • resource efficiency,
  • among many others. 



S for social - a business man and woman are talking with each other

S is for Social


The “S” in ESG examines how a company behaves towards society. This includes factors such as:

  • its attractiveness as an employer,
  • equal opportunities for employees,
  • controversial products and supply chains,
  • as well as numerous other factors. 


Letter g - A business man talking on the phone

G is for Governance


The last letter, the “G” in ESG, is the one that attracts the least attention from the public. However, corporate governance considerations play a key role for investors. These include factors such as:  

  • transparency in a company’s business activities,
  • the composition of its top management and their remuneration,
  • prevention measures it has taken against fraud and corruption,
  • and many others.

Four reasons for ESG

Personal preferences and convictions are playing an increasingly important role.

By taking ESG criteria into account when investing, you are taking active steps to align your personal investment goals with aspects of sustainability. Here are some key reasons why:

1. Competitive advantage

The Action Plan on financing sustainable growth—a significant regulatory endeavor from the EU— to redirect financial flows in such a way that they promote sustainable development. This creates a competitive advantage for companies that are rated positively as ESG investments: In the long run, it ought to be easier for them to secure financing on favorable terms.

2. Controlling risks

Investors who take ESG factors into account can reduce their risk. Considering fundamental ESG criteria can make your portfolio fit for the future.

3. Investing based on conviction

Do you believe that your money should go to companies that are really living up to their responsibilities? Taking ESG criteria into account makes it easier for you to identify such companies and more accurately reflect your convictions when investing.

“What does sustainability mean to you personally?”

This is always the first question we ask our clients. Because regardless of whether you prefer to make a difference via the decisions you make about your car, diversity, long-term business practices or recycling, our experience shows that many clients also prefer to base their investments on their own convictions, too. So, we want to make sure to reflect their ESG preferences as much as possible in their portfolio.
Portrait of Dennis Podszius

Dennis Podszius

Senior Relationship Manager, ESG Investment Specialist

Our ESG Advisory in detail

What you can count on

Vontobel experts and best-in-class partners

At Vontobel, our in-house investment experts support you with up-to-date analyses so you can make informed investment decisions. They not only recommend our own sustainability funds, but also advise you on selecting funds offered by third-party providers, and on individual securities. For this reason, we cooperate with best-in-class partners for research and external funds.

Transparency and monitoring

Your ESG investments are continually reviewed by our expert teams. If your portfolio is no longer in line with the standards and ESG preferences you have defined, we can inform and advise you.

Navigating through the jungle of different ESG approaches

The number of approaches to ESG is increasing—and so is the volume of regulations concerning transparency and other requirements. We support you in making investment decisions, taking your ESG preferences and regulatory requirements into account.

In-house ESG approach to Swiss equities

Our experts for Swiss Equities analyze around 100 companies operating in a wide variety of sectors. Their structured method of determining price targets takes ESG criteria and share recommendations into consideration—instead of merely sticking an “ESG label” on a particular share. In this way, ESG criteria are given greater, more precise weight.

FAQ: understanding ESG investing

Here you will find answers to the most frequent questions our experts are asked about ESG and sustainable investing.

While there are many different providers who issue ratings for individual securities and funds, they do not all consider the same factors—and thus they may not arrive at the same ratings. This means there is a risk that the specific criteria that are important to you as an investor might not be adequately covered.

This is why it makes sense to discuss making targeted investments in individual equities with an ESG expert. This way, the information basis for a decision can be broadened and, if necessary, expanded with in-depth research.


ESG is not always a top priority on investors’ agendas

Many of the issues that an ESG framework focuses attention on are structural megatrends. Climate change is an example of this. Along with other megatrends, it will still be relevant ten or fifteen years from now. However, some market cycles play out in such a way that a specific megatrend may not be at the top of investors’ agendas; other events of global scope take center stage. This leads to fluctuations in ESG investments. The war in Ukraine and the COVID pandemic are the most recent examples—with negative and positive effects respectively.

For new and experienced investors

1 hour consultation free of charge—by phone or in person

How can you integrate ESG into your portfolio as easily as possible? Our experts would be happy to contact you for an initial ESG consultation—with no obligation on your part. Alternatively, feel free to call us.

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