Spotlight on ESG Spring Social –we recently hosted a networking drinks evening for clients and contacts of the associates in our ESG team from across the firm. We were delighted to welcome representatives from two of our pro-bono clients, the Chancery Lane Project and WWF UK, who delivered excellent talks on their inspiring work and which provoked much discussion during the evening. If you would like to be invited to similar events in future, please register your interest.
BVCA course – "Developing an ESG strategy for your portfolio" - Travers Smith Senior Consultant Simon Witney recently spoke at the British Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (BVCA)'s exciting new course on 'Developing an ESG Strategy for your Portfolio'. In his session, Simon covered the regulatory context for sustainability strategies in private equity and venture capital firms, looking at the current priorities of EU and UK regulators.
"Recent developments in ESG regulation" – the most recent webinar in our series for Alternative Asset Managers looked at:
- the latest on SFDR, including reporting requirements for Article 6, Article 8 and Article 9 products
- status of the EU Taxonomy and its application to private funds
- the FCA's final rules on TCFD reporting for UK regulated asset managers and PE adviser/arrangers
- the UK's SDR and Green Taxonomy and
- recent ESG developments in the United States
Details of the next webinar in the series are set out in the Planned activities section below.
Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership - to deepen our collective expertise on sustainable finance, Travers Smith Senior Consultant Simon Witney and Knowledge Counsel Carys Clipper recently completed an 8-week course on sustainable finance with the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) gaining fascinating insight into sustainable finance trends and strategies, innovation and disruption and leadership skills that help to create impact.
ESG risk at London International Disputes Week (11 May 2022)- Heather Gagen, one of our Dispute Resolution partners, will be chairing a panel at this event on 11 May 2022 which will explore the contours of the ESG risk landscape globally and highlight key ESG risk trends, including:
- Corporate liability frameworks – what are the global litigation trends and key risk areas, including parent company and value chain liability?
- Business ethics and human rights – what is the right balance between soft law frameworks, regulatory intervention and litigation?
- The role of the Courts – are they becoming legitimate guardians of business ethics or unelected quasi-regulators?
- ESG activist litigation – could it create a chilling effect and hinder the pursuit of innovative corporate ESG agendas, or will it ensure corporate good behaviour and robust policy response?
The panel will share their own experiences of effective strategies for navigating this developing risk landscape. It will also debate whether increasing regulatory and litigation activism on business ethics and corporate accountability is proving effective in driving better ESG outcomes.
Speakers: Heather Gagen – Chair, Partner, Travers Smith; Kathryn Britten, Managing Director, Alix Partners; Adam Heppinstall QC, Barrister, Henderson Chambers; Dan Lambeth, Partner, ESG, Brunswick
To find out more about LIDW22 and to register for the event, please visit the LIDW website here. The event is available to attend virtually and in-person. Registration is free for in-house and government lawyers.
The Lawyer General Counsel Strategy Summit – (11-13 May 2022) – Head of Risk & Operational Regulatory Doug Bryden, Disputes Resolution partner Stephanie Lee and Employment Partner Adam Wyman will be hosting a roundtable session at this event on the role of the GC in addressing governance risks in a "purposeful" business. The session will explore what "good" looks like as regards to the "G" in ESG and how GCs should respond to the pressure on the business to do the 'right' thing
The Regulation of Impact Funds in the UK – (16 June 2022) - The next in our series of webinars aimed primarily at the Alternative Asset Management community will address some of the challenges in the EU and future UK regulation of impact funds, especially for private funds, and will look at the proposals for the establishment of minimum standards for SFDR Article 8 and 9 products. The webinar will feature a panel discussion with a range of experts from Travers Smith as well as external speakers. Sign up via our website to ensure you receive all future communications about this event.