Cubera hires Allianz’s ex-sustainability head

Cubera is raising its first primaries impact fund and plans to 'explicitly address and manage the sustainability performance' of all its funds.

Cubera, a Norwegian secondaries and fund of funds firm, has hired the former head of sustainability at Allianz Group as chief sustainability officer.

Cubera is raising its first impact fund of funds, which will invest in primary private equity funds generating “positive and measurable environmental and or social change”, Urs Bitterling told affiliate title New Private Markets via email.

“We look for managers who invest in solution driven companies within a wide range of sectors that generate sustainable transition and inclusive growth with proven technologies as an enabler.” The fund is led by Cubera’s head of primary investments, Thomas Wold.

Cubera has developed an impact monitoring framework derived from “many sources, including the Impact Management Project”, said Bitterling. “I am looking forward to be an active part in developing Cubera into a leading player in this nascent field.”

Bitterling left Allianz in 2021 and then moved from Germany to Stockholm, according to a LinkedIn post at the time. He was replaced by Hermann Rothert as head of sustainability, while Line Hestvik joined Allianz as the first chief sustainability officer, Citywire Selector reported.

Cubera closed its ninth secondaries fund on €524 million in 2020 and is understood to be preparing to launch its 10th. It also has Nordic-focused and international primary private equity fund of funds strategies. “Cuberas’s mission is to develop value beyond return,” Bitterling said. The firm plans to “explicitly address and manage the sustainability performance” of all its funds, he added.

Bitterling will “work with the entire team at Cubera to integrate sustainability further in existing fund of funds strategies and look at next steps with regards to new fund of funds strategies”, he said.

“I will also drive ESG disclosures as a basis for further development and build best-practices to shape [the] ESG market. We need to collaborate across the private equity industry in order to drive standardisation in collecting and reporting data, and make sure that the powerful ways the PE ownership model offers are used in an optimal and tangible way.”

Cubera was acquired by Norwegian asset manager Storebrand in 2019.

– This article was updated to insert Urs Bitterling’s first name.