Monday, 16 November 2020
Registration and Refreshment
ESG in Asian private equity – Finding a foothold in uncertainty
As the world continues to adapt to the changes brought about by 2020, it is clear that the continued progress of ESG in the private equity space is more crucial than ever before. According to a recent report, 63% of Asia managers have shown significant ESG integration in the past year, and whilst GPs have had to reprioritise in the short-term, COVID-19 has demonstrated a major turning point for ESG investing, prompting reflection in terms of how to best approach and focus on these issues in the future. Firms that continue to view ESG as a box-ticking exercise will certainly be left behind. Join our panel of esteemed global private equity experts in a discussion covering the continued growth of ESG engagement in Asia, resilient sectors, and their predictions for the year ahead as the dust settles.
- How have micro and macro factors impacted ESG investing for global and regional investors?
- How have Asian GPs implemented initiatives in the last year to improve ESG performance at the firm and portfolio level?
- What have been some big sector shifts and more resilient sectors in the past year?
- As we come out of the pandemic, what does the private equity industry need to do to ensure that ESG remains a top priority?
The private equity impact investing landscape in Asia
The past 12 months have seen leaps and bounds in the private equity impact investment space, as some of the world’s largest GPs establish their own global impact funds and formalise their strategies. Whilst there is no one-size-fits-all approach to including impact considerations, those who are just starting out in Asia will have to carefully consider how best to measure these goals in a practical manner, such as by aligning their existing portfolios with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the IFC Operating Principles. Our panel of experts will share their insights and lessons from their own impact investment journeys.
- What are some examples of approaches by top GPs to impact investing, and in which geographies and sectors do they choose to invest?
- How have firms used SDGs to improve the performance of their portfolio companies?
- Are global investors looking at increasing allocations for impact investments?
- What does impact investing look like in developed vs emerging Asia, and what are some opportunities and challenges that are unique to the region?
Fireside chat: Putting the ‘S’ in ESG – A GP’s experience in tackling the crisis
The global pandemic has emphasised the immediate impact on the ‘S’ in ESG, ranging from issues of disaster preparedness, to business continuity planning, employee health and safety, and supply chain risks. Whilst these are all factors that should already be at the forefront of GP’s concerns, going forward, LPs are likely to place increased scrutiny on such issues. Hear of an example where a regional GP has effectively implemented ESG standards at both the firm and portfolio level during the first half of 2020, and learn about their strategies for the upcoming year.
ESG reporting, disclosure, and regulatory shifts
Across the world, ESG reporting and disclosure has increased in importance as regulators put into place new mandatory disclosure requirements relating to climate-related issues. For those in the private equity industry, this shifting regulatory environment is pushing managers to think about ESG factors more seriously than ever before. Although the conversation in Asia is still developing, it is crucial for managers to understand how to effectively integrate sustainability risks into their investment processes and to convey those risks to their investors. In this session, a group of experts will share their insights on how best to approach ESG reporting, transparency, and disclosure requirements.
- For Asian GPs who are just beginning their ESG journey, what are some pragmatic ways to implement ESG reporting within their investment process?
- Where in Asia have regulators taken a more proactive stance on ESG disclosure and reporting? For example, the HKEX?
- What technology solutions are now available to help make the reporting process more streamlined?
- How can GPs in Asia learn from their European counterparts on transparency and reporting?
Lunch / Intermission
Case study: ESG data – The value-add proposition
Hear from a fund manager who successfully used the ESG data of a portfolio company to achieve financial gains. Understand what needs to be addressed when collecting data from portfolio companies, including how to encourage portfolio companies to report, practical tips on how to interpret the data received, and how both large and small firms can effectively utilise ESG data to improve portfolio performance.
How private equity managers are responding to the challenge of climate change and climate risks
As the signs of global warming become increasingly clear, there is growing awareness amongst the private equity community that climate change is the key risk to long-term investment performance. According to an assessment by LGT, private equity managers are starting to respond. 22% of Asian GPs are implementing an approach to climate change, with approaches ranging from climate analysis mapping to carbon offsetting. However, for those that have yet to implement a climate risk strategy within their firm and portfolio companies, they risk getting left behind. Join our panel of leading GPs and LPs who will share the strategies they have adopted and discuss how Asian GPs can be best prepared for the unique climate challenges ahead.
- How will the effects of climate change impact portfolios?
- How has the conversation between GP and LPs on climate change issues evolved, and what questions should GPs expect in the future?
- What are some concrete steps managers can take to ensure that they have an effective climate risk strategy?
- Case study – How can climate analysis mapping generate value creation opportunities?
LPs’ views on responsible investing in a changing world
Globally, LPs are continuing to work towards greater levels of engagement with GPs on responsible investing. Furthermore, according to the 2020 EMPEA Global LP survey, most LPs are taking considerations such as climate change into account when making investment decisions. In the past year, despite LPs being cognizant of the fact that there needs to be a period of stability before things return to normal, in the long-term, LPs will have to place more scrutiny on how their GP partners operate and how they have responded during the crisis. Join our panel of leading global LPs in a discussion of the best practices and recommendations for responsible investing in the Asia-Pacific region in a post-COVID world.
- What are LPs expecting from GPs during this period, and what are they prioritising in terms of ESG?
- How can GPs show their LPs that they are still making demonstrable efforts in these times?
- What unique challenges do LPs face in the region, and for LPs investing in emerging markets, what are some additional ESG risks that should be considered?
- How can GPs make sense of evolving LP requirements in areas such as carbon footprints?
Close of conference and cocktail reception
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