Antin takes an active role in the companies in which it invests. We aim to acquire majority stakes and when minority stakes are acquired, we seek to acquire the same rights as larger investors by way of Board representation and a list of reserved matters to ensure we retain joint control over the company. Involvement at the highest level allows us to address ESG risks and opportunities directly with our portfolio companies and initiate change where required.
Post-closing, an in-depth ESG review is conducted by Antin’s ESG team, in close collaboration with the Investment team and the portfolio company’s Management team. During this review, a thorough assessment of the portfolio company’s performance in managing key ESG issues identified during the acquisition phase is performed.
The results of that ESG review are used to highlight areas of progress and establish an ESG performance improvement action plan for the portfolio company. Progress towards implementing this plan is monitored by the Investment team throughout the holding period during regular Board meetings and on-site ESG reviews.
Nearing the exit phase, ESG progress achieved by the portfolio company during the holding period is assessed by Antin’s ESG team based on the initial ESG review performed at acquisition.
Where possible, the impacts of various ESG factors on the portfolio company’s financials are also measured. When relevant, this information is then incorporated into exit operations to demonstrate business value created through ESG to prospective buyers.
During the asset management phase, we constantly monitor the ESG performance of our portfolio companies as part of the risk management process. ESG issues are specifically itemised for discussion at our quarterly Portfolio Review Committee (PRC) meetings and addressed directly with our portfolio companies during each Board meeting.
Moreover, in 2011, we implemented a comprehensive annual ESG survey which has to be completed by all of our portfolio companies. That survey, which is regularly updated, includes a set of general and company-specific questions in a wide range of ESG areas, such as climate change, resource efficiency, environmental pollution, health and safety, human capital management, stakeholder engagement, corporate governance, business ethics, data security and responsible sourcing.
Furthermore, in 2018, to improve the effectiveness of our ESG data collection and monitoring process, we implemented an online ESG reporting platform. On this platform, our portfolio companies can access our annual ESG survey, report their company’s data, upload required attachments, as well as track and monitor progress.
Fostering the sharing of ESG expertise and best practices in our portfolio
In January 2019, we formed an ESG Club at Antin-level composed of representatives of our portfolio companies responsible for the management of ESG-related matters. The objective of this Club is to foster the sharing of ESG best practices and expertise in our portfolio. To do so, Club members meet once or twice a year to discuss common ESG issues. Occasionally, external experts are also invited to provide insights and views on complex ESG-related matters and trends.
To date, all of our 14 portfolio companies are represented within the Antin ESG Club.
11 portfolio companies have so far confirmed that they will attend the next Club meeting, which will take place in London on 16-17 June and include workshops on the UN Sustainable Development Goals, workplace diversity and anti-bribery and corruption.