Being active describes more than our approach to investing. It also is how we run our business as a publicly traded company. Our focus on transparency, corporate governance, life principles, ethical conduct and giving back to the communities in which we operate is core to our values. Diversity also is an important part of our culture and identity; over 50 percent of our employees are women — many in senior level positions. Over the course of 36 years, we have built a distinct corporate culture around renowned basketball Coach John Wooden’s Pyramid of Success™, which is a sustainable roadmap for each individual being a better person and team excellence. The life principles summarized in the Pyramid of Success have no explicit reference to investments, but are key to how we serve clients, view our investment responsibilities and operate as a responsible and inclusive company.
Westwood is a signatory of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI) and is committed to adopting and implementing responsible investment principles in a manner that’s consistent with our fiduciary duties to clients. We support the Principles of Responsible Investing and recognize the importance of considering Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues as one part of our overall investment process. Our sustainable investment commitment is linked to our investment process across our high-conviction equity and outcome-oriented solutions. Across our diverse set of strategies, we take a fundamental approach to identifying high-quality companies and sound businesses around the world. Sustainability, often described as ESG, is directly linked to the bottom-up, fundamental assessment of companies and has always been an input to our analysis. We are formalizing our holistic approach to sustainable investing, recognizing that there is market interest in understanding why and how ESG analysis is conducted within our process. Further, we recognize how important ESG related issues are in conducting bottom-up fundamental analysis and its contribution to determining company strategy, downside risk and valuation.
Westwood is committed to the successful integration and promotion of ESG at both the corporate level and investment level. We have established two governing structures to ensure we have the strategic influence and leadership required to create a clear corporate sustainability strategy across the business. The separation of responsibilities among the two governing structures was designed to ensure proper accountability across the firm. Additional information on these committees is available in our ESG policy.