Our ESG perspective
Puma Private Equity (the private equity division of Puma Investments) invests into businesses, focussing on helping them scale up and achieve transformational change. We run a sector agnostic investment mandate, so support businesses involved in a wide range of different activities. We run our own business according to the ESG principles set out by the Puma Investments Group; this document deals specifically with how our ESG perspective is applied to our investment activity.
Growth companies of the type we back develop innovative products, services or offers that enhance the lives of their user base. Our portfolio companies generate employment and help grow the economy, creating returns for management, other shareholders and our investors, as well as contributing to the UK tax take. Investment of the form we undertake provides a strong social good.
However, we are mindful of negative externalities which could undermine that social good. We include consideration of these matters into our diligence and ongoing assessment processes.
We are also aware of the potential opportunities available to companies by integrating ESG considerations into decision making and we factor this into our on-going work with the portfolio companies we support.
How this is implemented
As with the wider Puma group, we uphold international standards of good practice and abide by the Modern Slavery Act. To structure our ESG approach, we have emulated the same structure as the Puma group by setting out principles under five areas: Governance, Environment, Marketplace, Workplace and Community. These principles are detailed below, however, please note that whilst we try to ensure this is a comprehensive list, it is also subject to change. Our ESG policy is reviewed at board level and is made available to members of our Investment Committee.
- Be honest and transparent, and act with integrity in all our dealings with investors, investee companies and professional advisers.
- Abide by applicable laws and regulations, and uphold international standards of good practice.
- Undertake appropriate financial and legal due diligence exercises for each investment, reviewing, for example: accounting methods, shareholder interests, data security / GDPR, health and safety, antibribery and policies against money laundering.
- Review executive and non-executive team and shareholders at the point of investment, assessing whether current or previous board members, management or the lead investors exhibited any: political affiliations; ongoing or historical non-ethical behaviour; or involvement in sectors against this Policy.
- Examine board practices and work with management to identify potential improvements.
- Implement and uphold sustainable practices that minimise our environmental footprint, including the efficient use of resources and effective waste management.
- Examine potential investee companies’ supply chains through the following questions:
- How does the business assess environmental risk associated with its supply chain?
- How does the business consider its energy use?
- How does the business dispose of waste?
- Review whether potential investee companies’ products or services are aimed at children and, where so, ensure (to the extent we are able) that they are marketed appropriately.
- Assess whether the firm is dependent on clients or suppliers who exhibit behaviours or values counter to those of tolerance and freedom.
- Consider the extent to which there is a known risk within the supply chain of exploitation or modern slavery.
- Ensure the firm abides by product quality and safety standards and complies with the appropriate regulation.
- Foster workplace practices that support diversity, equality and inclusion at all levels, pursuing an environment where everyone is treated fairly.
- Support employee welfare through effective health and wellbeing initiatives.
- Maintain commitment to diversity of thought and action amongst the staff and senior decision-makers of potential investee companies.
- Consider the impact of our investments on local and wider communities.
- Not proceed with investments into companies that have direct involvement in offensive arms and armaments or pornography.
- Consider carefully (with a bias towards not proceeding) any businesses that present cause for concern through involvement in sectors or activities. These include gambling, lightly tested or emergent pharmaceuticals (including cannabis derivatives), tobacco or smoking-related products including Vaping, trade with a country that is on the UK sanctions list.
- Support and contribute to wider society through, for example, support of charitable causes Consider the impact of the potential investee companies’ activities, services and/or products and supply chains on local and wider communities.