Does your firm have an ESG policy? Possibly not, and at this stage it may not be an issue for you or your investors.

Environmental, social and governance issues still tend to be trumped by financial ones.

However, a glance in the crystal ball suggests a stringent, data-driven approach to non-financial risks could in the future have a very real impact on financial returns. Here are some noteworthy early indicators:

– Limited partners in Europe – from where ESG trends tend to spread – are making noises about linking sustainablity goals to carried interest (more detail posted today).

– We have seen the first credit facility that adjusts its cost depending on the sustainability goals.

– We have also heard of a PE firm currently in talks with local European governments on the favourable tax benefits that may be extended to companies meeting certain sustainability targets. More on that to follow.

These all point to a need for reliable, audited data, which moves ESG into the CFO’s purview. It is a topic that we are digging into right now and we would be interested in any intel you can send our way.

Email prepared by Toby Mitchenall.