First Responsible Investment Report: Waterland steps up its commitment to responsible investment

Bussum, 17 June 2024 – Waterland has significantly intensified its ESG commitments and practices: 90% of its portfolio companies are monitoring and reporting on a comprehensive set of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) metrics while increasing their focus on ESG management. With this, Waterland is ensuring robust foundations for enacting its buy-and-build strategy and for driving sustainable growth over the coming years.

Since becoming a signatory to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) in 2015, Waterland has sought to consistently align its investment and ownership approach with international standards and frameworks. Today, Waterland is delighted to present the first edition of its Responsible Investment Report, following the establishment of a dedicated ESG Team and the upgrade of its responsible investment strategy – marking a significant milestone in its journey towards sustainable growth.

Over the past two years Waterland developed and rolled out enhanced ESG practices across its portfolio: more granular ESG reviews, increased attention to inclusion, diversity and governance and specific focus on CO2 emissions. Waterland requested its portfolio companies to monitor and report progress on over 20 ESG key performance indicators, achieving 95% adherence across the companies that were eligible for reporting.

Waterland’s inaugural Responsible Investment Report and the growth of its in-house ESG management capabilities demonstrate the firm’s commitment to action. Through long-term partnerships with portfolio management teams, Waterland is striving to make its companies inherently better, financially healthier and more sustainable.

Notably, 90% of Waterland’s 87 portfolio companies – with combined revenues of approximately 21 billion Euros and together employing around 120,000 people across Europe – have now adopted comprehensive ESG reporting principles. Almost all of these companies are monitoring their greenhouse gas emissions, with many of them already working on emission reduction initiatives. Over 90% of these companies have ESG governance structures and practices in place, such as appointing an ESG officer to the board or certifying their ESG practices. Over 60% of the companies have at least one female board or senior leadership team member.

Waterland is also committed to improve its ESG practices within its own operations. Emission reduction targets have been set and are being pursued through measures such as implementing new office and travel policies, shifting to electric vehicles and procuring green energy and sustainable aviation fuel.

Through the publication of this report, Waterland aims to illustrate the essence of its strategy – prioritizing transparency, accountability and ethical conduct. In an era where responsible business practices are essential, Waterland shares its initiatives and challenges, demonstrating how it contributes to a future where successful investments align with societal and environmental well-being.” Cedric Van Cauwenberghe, Group Managing Partner

Waterland press contact:
Marketing & Communications Manager
Laurence Van Doosselaere
T +32 479 77 57 68