The COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with greater social and ecological awareness, has prompted a sea change in attitudes toward ESG. For the asset managers and PE firms charged with meeting those expectations, that presents opportunities and challenges. With that in mind, our survey of senior PE and asset management executives reveals not only where firms currently are on their ESG journey but the road ahead—one whose destination will determine who thrives and who falls by the wayside.
Key findings include:
- Almost two-thirds (63%) of respondents say ESG factors will become significantly more important in investment decisions over the next 12-24 months.
- Investors’ perceptions are top of mind for firms as they integrate ESG into their investment processes: 83% of respondents say concern about brand image and reputation is driving this.
- While there is some controversy over whether ESG strategies really do deliver sustainable outperformance, half of respondents report that their ESG approach has had a positive effect on returns, including 20% who say the effect has been highly positive.