Sustainability in the finance industry

Sustainable Finance & ESG

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Sustainable finance: Sustainable investments, sustainable profits.

Alongside new ESG disclosure requirements, the globally-applicable EU Action Plan on sustainable finance has created unique regulatory standards for various groups of professionals in the finance industry (e.g., asset managers, fund managers and investment advisers) and their products, with the aim of making investments more ecologically sustainable. While it affects virtually all players on the financial market, its greatest impact is on the real economy.

The new legal requirements will gradually take effect from 2021 and will require market players to adjust their work and products accordingly; in particular their business strategies, risk strategies, reimbursement policies, risk management systems, reporting and data management.

Simultaneously, and by mid-2021 at the latest, investors must be asked whether and to what extent sustainability is one of their key investment goals. In short, there will be an increasingly strong focus on sustainable investments.

Based on our extensive experience and deep insights into the industry, our interdisciplinary teams develop comprehensive sustainable finance solutions for products and corporate structures as part of our 360° approach.

In recent years it has become common practice for companies to proclaim their commitment to sustainability – although so far the term has been open to interpretation. But from now on, there will be less room for manoeuvre. In future, each and every aspect of “sustainability” will have to align with various regulatory requirements.

Lisa Watermann, lawyer
Lisa Watermann, Rechtsanwältin bei GSK Stockmann

We support financial market players as they move towards sustainability.

In the European Union, the question is no longer whether, but how to regulate the field of sustainable finance. Regulation poses immense challenges to the real economy and the financial industry while simultaneously opening the door to a whole new world of opportunities – because sustainable investments means sustainable profits. With investor interest in sustainable options likely to increase, financial market participants who offer a timely and holistic sustainability strategy can potentially benefit from this growing investor base.

Our team here at GSK Stockmann will support and advise you on strategic, efficient and sustainable solutions for all relevant aspects of sustainable finance. Specific areas we can help you with include:

  • Developing a compliant corporate strategy (with a primary focus on business strategy & risk strategy)
  • Developing an implementation strategy and a meaningful catalogue of measures to meet regulatory requirements and transparency obligations
  • Setting up ESG funds / impact funds
  • Green bonds and green finance
  • ESG compliance or ESG-compliant real estate projects
Oliver Glück, Rechtsanwalt bei GSK Stockmann

The introduction of the EU Action Plan on sustainable finance has catapulted sustainability to a new level. The focus is no longer solely on political goals, but also on legal requirements. Sustainability has taken on a whole new meaning.

Dr. Oliver Glück, lawyer

Your challenges – our solutions.

Our solutions in the field of sustainable finance build on GSK Stockmann’s 360° approach. Our teams in Germany and Luxembourg offer investors, companies and financial market participants comprehensive legal advice on all aspects of sustainability. By integrating sustainability criteria in a strategic manner, you can minimise financial risks resulting from climate change, depleted resources, environmental destruction and social factors.

ESG pays for itself – particularly in the field of real estate. In future, stricter sustainability criteria will apply to project developers, asset managers and those who manage funds and portfolios. If you take action now and align your properties and contracts accordingly, you will generate better profits. We’ll be delighted to help.

Dr. Christoph Strelczyk, lawyer
Dr. Christoph Strelczyk, Rechtsanwalt bei GSK Stockmann

More than just lawyers.
We are your partners.

Entrepreneurial initiative and the spirit of partnership are written into our DNA of our law firm. Coupled with our professional expertise, these form the basis for the sustainable advice we offer and are the key to your success. We take partnership literally: as your trustworthy partner, we will look after you and your company’s interests. We understand your economic goals – and we work proactively and creatively to promote them to the fullest extent possible. In short, we take responsibility and make it our business to look after your business as if it were our own.

We support you on your journey towards sustainability. 

Arrange an appointment now – our team looks forward to hearing from you.

Ihre Experten bei GSK Stockmann zu Sustainable Finance und ESG

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    ESG: The three factors of sustainability

    The market for sustainable investments is booming. ESG – which is short for environmental, social and (corporate) governance – refers to basic criteria for sustainable investments that take environmental protection, social concerns and good corporate governance into account. Since 2017, ESG criteria have been included in the annual sustainability reports of publicly listed companies, in certifications, ESG scores and in Germany’s sustainability index.

    Rating agencies and independent experts can verify the details for banks, funds and investors. Good, sound advice is absolutely indispensable in order to comply with the numerous regulatory requirements.

    The E in ESG stands for environmental. It refers to measures that are taken to reduce the respective carbon footprint. These will include strategies for protecting the climate, using renewable energy, using resources more mindfully and minimising airborne and water emissions. In the case of real estate, for example, you can increase the value of a building by improving its energy efficiency or transport links. Due to climate change, sustainability discussions were dominated for many years by ecological aspects. Recently, however, the Covid-19 pandemic, the lockdown and supply chain laws have triggered a shift, with investors now turning their focus to social standards.

    The S in ESG stands for social. It embraces all social aspects of an investment and accounts for factors such as employee rights, occupational health and safety, fair pay, the right of assembly and the right to join a trade union. Further down the supply chain, supply chain laws also regulate sustainability standards for suppliers. In cases where social factors are an acquisition criterium, real estate such as nurseries and care homes may be able to command higher prices or generate higher profits. Conversely, social and ethical factors can have a negative impact on the productivity of a company or the value of an asset. Innovative risk minimisation instruments are required in order to calculate the associated risks.

    The G in ESG stands for governance. This refers to all measures associated with good corporate governance, including good supervisory structures, compliance, company ethics, shareholder rights, transparency, effective risk management and measures to combat corruption. All these aspects are included in the sustainability report and hence in the company rating. Infractions such as bribery and corruption count as violations against ESG criteria and may prevent a venture from being included in a sustainable investment portfolio.

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    Your Contacts.

    Dr. Christoph

    Dr. Christoph Strelczyk

    Local Partner*

    +49 40 369703-20

    christoph.strelczyk@gsk.de

    Lisa Watermann

    Counsel

    +49 89 288174-662

    lisa.watermann@gsk.de

    Dr. Oliver Glück

    Partner*

    +49 89 288174-33

    oliver.glueck@gsk.de

    © GSK Stockmann 2021

    * Partner: A partner within the meaning of the partnership company law.
       Local Partner: not a partner within the meaning of the partnership company law.
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