The shareholder that controls Novo Nordisk A/S is responding to a downturn in green assets by ratcheting up investments with profits from the obesity drugmaker.
(Bloomberg) — The shareholder that controls Novo Nordisk A/S is responding to a downturn in green assets by ratcheting up investments with profits from the obesity drugmaker.
Novo Holdings, which controls 77% of the votes in what is now Europe’s most valuable company, will invest about 2 billion kroner ($290 million) in a new energy transition fund, expanding its portfolio of assets outside of health care. It’s also taken a 20% stake in the fund manager, Glentra Capital, it said on Thursday.
Novo Holdings is “less sensitive to temporary shake-ups” because it’s “able to invest with a long-time horizon,” Morten Beck Jorgensen, managing partner for capital investments, said by email. “We see great opportunities to invest in a greener future while generating attractive long-term returns.”
The renewable energy market has been battered in recent weeks, even as scientists reported global temperatures hit record highs and extraordinary fires and floods ravaged countries around the world. Government commitments have wavered and supply chain woes hit wind and solar power providers.
The popularity of Novo Nordisk’s treatments, which include insulin for diabetes, have helped boost the holding company’s assets to well over $110 billion last year, paving the way for more green investments. Last month, Novo Nordisk paid out its biggest interim dividend ever, after sales of obesity treatments such as Wegovy almost tripled in the second quarter alone.
The Glentra Capital fund will focus on wind, solar, sustainable fuels, energy storage and electric mobility. Novo Holdings has traditionally focused on life science companies but has been building a new “narrative” with green investments, Jorgensen said.
Its other recent energy transition investments include The Renewable Energy Partnership, with Danish pension fund Sampension and European Energy A/S, which will buy land in Denmark and Sweden on which to build solar and wind farms.
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