Investment manager Downing LLP has announced that it has been certified as a B Corporation (B Corp), joining a group of companies committed to people and planet, as well as profit.
The certification means Downing LLP has been recognised by B Lab, the not-for-profit network, for meeting high standards of social and environmental performance, accountability and transparency.
The process evaluates a company using more than 200 criteria across five categories: governance, environment, workers, community and customers.
Gaining certification represents a significant milestone in Downing’s 35-year history and places the company as part of the first group of financial services firms in the UK to make a public commitment to sustainability.
Roger Lewis, Head of ESG at Downing LLP, commented: “As providers of debt and equity, investors have a powerful role in achieving net environmental gain, positive societal outcomes and ensuring organisations are well governed. We are pleased to be advocating stakeholder capitalism through our B Corp status, whereby our success now includes that of our clients, staff, communities and the planet.
“In achieving B Corp status, we are underlining our commitment to weaving sustainable investment throughout everything we do. This includes valuing material ESG factors, ongoing active ownership, and reporting and advocacy. This approach has materialised in several initiatives over the years, including introducing wildlife and protecting biodiversity at our solar sites, investing in special educational needs schools and care homes, and partnering with local organisations to educate children about renewable energy.”
In August 2022 Downing also launched its Healthcare Impact EIS, offering investors the opportunity to invest in leading UK early-stage healthcare businesses that are seeking to significantly improve patient outcomes, increase access to cutting-edge healthcare and reduce medical costs. This is a contribution to the ‘decade of delivery’ for the UN Sustainable Development Goals, with a focus on #3 Good Health & Well-being.