SD-M GmbH - Global pioneer for standardized ESG-Integration
SD-M GmbH - Global pioneer for standardized ESG-Integration
SD-M GmbH - Global pioneer for standardized ESG-Integration

Dr. rer. oec. Axel Hesse

axel hesseDr. rer. oec. Axel Hesse is
Founder, Shareholder & Managing Director of SD-M® GmbH.

Dr. Hesse has 27 years of experience in Sustainable Finance. He has published numerous studies on the sustainable investments of institutional investors and on the sustainable indicators that are relevant to financial performance. His PhD thesis was devoted to Sustainable Banking.


  • 1990-1992: Bank apprenticeship at Commerzbank Hanover
  • 1992-1993: Alternative service at Deutsche Umwelthilfe
  • 1993-1998: Studies in business administration with a focus on sustainable management, asset management and accounting/controlling. Thesis dealt with environmental funds and environmental project finance
  • 1995: Work for the “Global Care Fund” of the London-based insurer NPI together with Tessa Tennant (CDP, ASrIA), Anne-Maree O'Connor (NZ SuperFund) and Mark Campanale (Carbon Tracker)
  • 1999-2001: Member of an executive advisory board for sustainable asset management at HypoVereinsbank (HVB Group) in Munich. At this time the bank launched the world’s first investment product linked to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index
  • 2006: PhD in sustainable banking from the Leipzig Graduate School of Management
  • 2009-2016: Member of the jury for the portfolio institutionell Award “Best Sustainable Investor”
  • 2001-2012: Scientifist and consultant for sustainable institutional investments under the SD-M® trademark
  • 2012: Launch of SD-M® GmbH
  • 2013: Launch of SD-KPIntegration® database and iSTOXX SD-KPIndex® family
  • 2015: Part-time specialist sustainable investments at NORD/LB Asset Management regarding SD-KPInventory® and SD-KPIntegration®
  • 2016-2019: ESG integration at Metzler Asset Management
  • 2020-2021: Senior Manager/Senior Advisor Sustainable Finance for zeb consulting (esp. standardized ESG data & rating of material credit risks for 6 German Banks)
  • References

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