Hermes GPE, KKR, Northedge Capital and Bridges Ventures win 2016 ESG private equity awards

Beth Houghton at Palatine wins outstanding individual contribution gong.

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Private equity firms, Hermes GPE, KKR, Northedge Capital and Bridges Ventures have all been recognised for the quality of their ESG work in the BVCA (British Venture Capital Association) Responsible Investment Awards 2016. The awards were presented at the BVCA’s annual summit in London yesterday (Oct 6).
Beth Houghton, Partner at Palatine Private Equity, won the award for outstanding individual contribution to responsible investment in private equity, in the first year for the category.
The judges praised her leadership both internally at Palatine and externally in the private equity industry.
Hermes GPE, the £6bn manager, won the award for best ESG Framework for a private equity investor with more than £1bn in assets. It is the first time the award has been won by a limited partner (LP asset owner) rather than a general partner (GP private equity manager) as the awards increasingly recognize the role of LPs in pushing forward RI criteria.
The judges said Hermes’ submission reflected an active and genuine approach to responsible investment via a practicality framework.
A similarly strong framework “at the heart of the all the firm’s investment activities” was posited by the judges in awarding the ESG Framework for a firm with less than £1bn in assets to Bridges Ventures, the London-based sustainable and impact venture specialist.KKR, the $131bn US manager, won the 2016 award for ESG Engagement with portfolio companies for a firm over £1bn in assets. The judges said KKR’s varied and solid case studies demonstrated it has put a lot of thought behind its responsible investment approach, with strong buy-in from KKR’s leadership. Particularly impressive, said the judges, was the firm’s use of different consultants as well as the measurement of financial benefit and a strong link with fiduciary duties.
NorthEdge Capital, the Manchester-based lower mid-market buy-out and development capital firm, won the ESG Engagement award for a firm with less than £1bn in assets
The judges said the firm continued to demonstrate a strong commitment to the improvement and evolution of their engagement on responsible investment, and specifically commended their use of in-house and bespoke ESG monitoring tools across their portfolio.
Responsible Investor is the exclusive media partner for the awards and RI Managing Editor, Hugh Wheelan, is one of the awards judges.