Fund manager WHEB becomes a B Corp

Written by Rebecca O'Connor on 7th June 2016

WHEB Asset Management has attained “B Corp” status: a new accreditation for companies that operate for people and planet as well as profit, now making in-roads into the Square Mile.

The group confirmed yesterday that it had passed the tests to become a B Corp, which involves enshrining a legal commitment to all stakeholders, including workers, suppliers, community, customers and the environment – not just to shareholders – in the company’s operations and objectives.

Companies who apply through the non-profit B Lab must meet certain standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.

The B Corp organisation was founded with the goal of changing the nature of business goals, inspiring all businesses to compete, not only to be the best in the world, but to be the best for the world.

There are more 1,700 B Corporations in 50 countries, with the same unifying goal: to redefine success in business.

B Corp has begun to make in-roads into the City. WHEB joins Generation Investment Management, chaired by Al Gore and run by David Blood. Private equity firms to have acquired the status include Bridges Ventures and Big Issue Invest. EQ Investors is a wealth manager that has also met the B Corp standard (see our interview with them here). The UK branch of B Corp hopes that more financial services firms will join their ranks.

In order to be certified, WHEB Asset Management had to meet with the higher standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability required of B Corporations. These performance standards are comprehensive, transparent and verified.

George Latham, of WHEB Asset Management, said: “Becoming a certified B Corporation underlines our commitment to sustainability and our overall mission, to ‘advance sustainability and create prosperity through positive impact investments’.”

WHEB is focused on a single, long-only global equities strategy to invest in companies providing solutions to some of the most serious environmental and social challenges facing mankind over the coming decades.

This strategy focuses on sustainable investment and the integration of environmental, social and governance issues into investment decision-making.  The firm is independent and owner managed, run by some of the most experienced practitioners of sustainable investment.