COP26 revisited

COP stands for ‘Conference of the Parties’ and is the decision-making body of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The purpose of COPs is to review progress towards the ultimate goal of the UNFCCC: “to stabilize greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system, in a time frame which allows ecosystems to adapt naturally and enables sustainable development.”

COP26, in Glasgow, was about as successful as expected. The focus of this iteration of the annual conference, in addition to filling in gaps left open by negotiators at previous COPs, was “coal, cars, cash and trees”.

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Rather than announce a single, sweeping agreement as happened at COP21 in Paris, Glasgow birthed a less exciting combination of detailed proposals and miniature side-deals:

  • The Glasgow Climate Pact was the first COP text to explicitly urge countries to phase down their use of coal specifically and fossil fuel subsidies generally.
  • China and the US issued a surprise statement to confirm their joint commitment to address climate change, as did a group of multilateral development banks (MDBs).
  • Rules were ironed out for a global carbon market, designed to match emissions reduction projects with counterparties in need of emissions reductions.
  • 141 countries pledged to halt and reverse deforestation and land degradation by 2030.
  • 110 countries signed the Global Methane Pledge, which states that methane (which is one of the most potent GHGs) emissions must be reduced by 30% by 2030, compared to the 2020 level.
  • More than 450 companies in the financial services sector, accounting for USD 130 trillion in AUM, have now signed up to the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ).
  • The IFRS announced the formation of the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) to standardise the disclosure of non-financial information.
  • Progress was made towards achieving an outstanding target of USD100 billion per year in financing for emerging markets to adapt to and mitigate climate change risks.

With all said and done in Glasgow, the world is on track for between 1.8C and 2.4C of warming before 2100. Though an improvement upon the pre-COP26 forecast, such an increase is still higher than the limit agreed upon at COP21. The sclerotic pace of international diplomacy remains at odds with the urgency demanded by a problem as large and dynamic as climate change.

Nevertheless, we remain optimistic that the ultimate goal of the UNFCCC can be realised and believe that there are significant investment opportunities (and risks) to be managed in pursuit of this goal. Consequently, we have high conviction in best-in-class ESG-labelled strategies (e.g. UBS Multilateral Development Bank Bonds ETF) and well-constructed thematic baskets (e.g. iClima Global Decarbonisation Enablers ETF).

ESG Portfolio Manager
James is a Portfolio Manager at Titan Asset Management and is responsible for Titan’s approach to sustainable investing.

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The previous Titan Asset Management funds have now moved to a new site and trading entity, Titan Investment Solutions. Titan Asset Management now holds the MPS only.

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Paul Hunt


Paul Hunt is a proven business leader and entrepreneur with over 30 years’ experience and track record of scaling businesses across multiple sectors. Hunt is highly experienced in business turnarounds, strategic planning and creating a positive people culture geared for success.

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David Chandler

Portfolio Assistant

David is responsible for providing operational support to the fund managers. David has passed the CFA UK IMC and graduated in 2018 with a degree in Economics and Business Management from the University of Sheffield.

James Peel, CFA

Portfolio Manager – ESG

James is a Portfolio Manager at Titan Asset Management and is responsible for Titan’s approach to sustainable investing. He previously worked as a researcher at the British Chamber of Commerce in Taipei. James graduated in 2018 from the University of St Andrews, where he studied economics. He is a CFA charter holder and has passed the CFA UK Investment Management Certificate (IMC), the CFA UK Certificate in ESG Investing, and the CFA UK Certificate in Climate and Investing (CCI).

Jonah Levy, CFA

Portfolio Manager – Physicals

When not collecting various minerals and mining memorabilia, Jonah can be found managing the physical allocations at Titan Asset Management. Prior to Titan he worked at Tavistock Wealth for 3 years, having previously gained experience in Holland at an oil brokerage, and in London at an energy trading house. Jonah is a CFA charter holder, having graduated from St. Andrews University with an MA in Management and Economics.

Alex Livingstone, CFA

Head of Trading – FX & ETFs

Alex is responsible for the ETF trading and FX strategy at Titan Asset Management and has executed over £5 billion of trades during his prior 4 years at Tavistock Wealth. Alex also assists in the wider portfolio management of the CIP specialising in technical analysis and risk management. He is a CFA charter holder and holds an BSc in Retailing, Marketing and Management from Loughborough University.

Sekar Indran, CFA

Senior Portfolio Manager – Equities

Sekar is responsible for managing the team’s equity investments. He helped expand the investment proposition over five years at Tavistock Wealth and continues this role at Titan Asset Management. Sekar has prior financial services experience at Barclays and Allianz. He is a CFA charter holder and holds a BSc degree in Industrial Economics from the University of Nottingham.

John Leiper, MSc, CFA, FDP, CFTe

Chief Investment Officer

John Leiper is the Chief Investment Officer of Titan Asset Management and carries direct responsibility for all investments in the Centralised Investment Proposition (CIP) at the firm. John has 15 years’ experience in financial markets having previously worked in a variety of roles at RBS, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse and Tavistock Wealth. John Leiper is a CFA and FDP charter holder and a member of the Society of Technical Analysts. He holds a BSc degree in Economics from Warwick University and an MSc degree in Economic History from the London School of Economics.

Matthew Cureton


Matthew has been an intrinsic part of Haibun (now Titan Alternatives) since its formation. As a Co-Founder, he has focused on developing relationships with clients, providers, and companies seeking funding.

Matthew’s personal involvement with the fund-raising activities at Titan Alternatives starts at the very beginning of each journey.

Incorporating the due diligence process, meeting with the various management teams, and visiting companies on site, to then being involved with the marketing documents, hosting presentations, and facilitating the investments for clients. Matthew also continues to monitor and report on the investment throughout its life, which has included him taking on Non-Executive Directorships or observer roles on various company boards.