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Time to stub out tobacco? Exploring tobacco free portfolios

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Time to stub out tobacco? Exploring tobacco free portfolios

In 2010 Founder and CEO of Tobacco  Free Portfolios, Dr. Bronwyn King inadvertently discovered that most pension funds, including her own, invested in tobacco. 

As a radiation oncologist treating cancer patients she decided to act, and approached her fund’s executives and Trustees. Following an 18-month period of discussion, information exchange and analysis, First State Super adopted a tobacco-free position in 2012. 

A cascade of interest followed from further superannuation funds in Australia and Tobacco Free Portfolios was created. 

In 2015 the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) provided seed funding to expand Tobacco Free Portfolios’ reach beyond Australia. Cancer Research UK subsequently offered support, and I joined as the UK Director in April 2016. 

Both Dr King and I are also practising clinicians, and very much in touch with the daily reality of the effects of tobacco. Our third colleague, Clare Payne, COO and Director Oceania, is a lawyer, lectures in Business Ethics in Australia and is a Founder and Board Member of the Banking and Finance Oath. 

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