Innovation Stories


TIAA-CREF’s Asset Management team manages a wide range of investment strategies and assets spanning a variety of portfolios. With active involvement in socially responsible investments, such as energy-efficient commercial real estate and sustainably managed farmlands, TIAA-CREF’s Asset Management approach matches innovative investing with a historical commitment to serve.

TIAA-CREF Asset Management team has demonstrated many examples of innovative investing, told here through short case studies of particular strategies and sectors from around the globe.

With a real estate sector representing over $19 billion1 in assets, the TIAA-CREF organization has established itself as a smart investor, acquiring real estate that is not only commercially valuable, but also is often furnished with energy-efficient enhancements. This dedication to “green” real estate has won TIAA-CREF-owned buildings numerous awards, including the ENERGY STAR Award and LEED-EB Gold certification.

TIAA-CREF has expanded the agricultural portfolio—it now includes many properties in the major grain producing regions of the world: the U.S., Australia, Brazil, and Eastern Europe. Within these properties, TIAA employees work with local farmers and operators to implement state-of-the-art technology and sustainable farming practices. With investments in grain, timber, cotton, sugarcane, and many other permanent crops, the agriculture portfolio seeks to produce enduring risk-adjusted returns.

Another key aspect of TIAA-CREF Asset Management’s distinguishing characteristics is the organization’s involvement in community service. For example, the organization’s Fruits of Employment program hires disabled, but capable, individuals to work on local farms and vineyards—benefiting the community by creating employment opportunities, and benefiting the asset through a reliable workforce.

After 90 years of investing for the greater good, the TIAA-CREF organization continues to implement innovative investment strategies for its clients. Learn more about TIAA-CREF Asset Management innovative investing by reading the Innovation Stories here on this site.

1. This represents assets across the organization, including entities other than Teachers Advisors, Inc.

Important Information:

TIAA’s Agriculture investments are one of the many investments of TIAA’s General Account, an account solely owned by TIAA that is not available to individual investors and whose performance is not directly allocated to any specific contract or obligation. TIAA’s General Account invests in a broad range of diversified investments to support TIAA’s contractual guarantees and business operations.

Past performance is not indicative of future results. The material is for informational purposes only and should not be regarded as a recommendation or an offer to buy or sell any product or service to which this information may relate. Certain products and services may not be available to all entities or persons.

© 2014 and prior years, Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association - College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF), New York, NY 10017