Investors team up to launch French 30% Club for gender diversity

AXA IM, Amundi and Sycomore are among a new coalition pushing listed companies on female representation.

AXA Investment Managers, ‌Amundi,‌ ‌La‌ ‌Banque‌ ‌Postale‌ ‌Asset‌ ‌Management,‌ ‌Sycomore‌ ‌Asset‌ ‌Management,‌ ‌‌Mirova ‌and‌ ‌Ostrum‌ ‌Asset‌ ‌Management have partnered to launch a French division of the 30% Club on gender diversity. 

The 30% Club was originally set up in the UK by Dame Helena Morrissey, Head of Personal Investing at Legal & General Investment Management, during her time as CEO of Newton. The initiative brings together Chairs and CEOs in a bid to achieve at least 30% female representation on FTSE100 boards. It now has footholds in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Japan.

The new, French arm of the group will promote gender diversity within the SBF 120’s executive management teams.

The six asset managers represent nearly €3trn, and plan to use their engagement and voting capacity to encourage‌ ‌firms‌ ‌to‌ ‌increase gender diversity. More‌ ‌broadly,‌ ‌the‌ ‌coalition‌ ‌aims‌ ‌to‌ ‌understand‌ ‌how‌ ‌the‌ ‌criteria‌ ‌of‌ ‌gender‌ ‌diversity‌ ‌is‌ ‌considered‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌recruitment‌ ‌and‌ ‌promotion‌ ‌process‌ ‌at‌ ‌all‌ ‌levels‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌corporate‌ ‌hierarchy‌, ‌with‌ ‌the‌ goal ‌of‌ ‌ensuring‌ ‌the‌ ‌creation‌ ‌of‌ ‌clear‌ ‌goals,‌ ‌actions‌ ‌plans,‌ ‌and‌ ‌ultimately‌ ‌sufficiently‌ ‌ diverse‌ ‌talent‌ ‌pool‌ ‌across‌ ‌the‌ ‌companies

“Diversity in executive management teams fosters a more efficient and innovative decision-making process and allows for better retention of talent,” said the coalition in a statement. “As investors, we want to encourage the sustainable growth of the companies in which we invest, and we are convinced that this can come from a better representation of women in executive management teams.”

Moving forward, the French group wishes to expand its membership to other asset management companies invested in SBF 120 companies, whether based in France or abroad, as well as institutional investors.