WHEB Asset Management, based in London, UK, has joined the European network for shareholder engagement SfC – Shareholders for Change in April 2023.
WHEB is an independent asset management company, created in 2009. It draws its roots from deep within the ethical and socially-responsible investment movement and is exclusively dedicated to sustainable and impact investing. The company became a certified B Corp in 2016. In 2019 it committed to becoming a Net Zero Carbon business by 2025.
«We are a mission-driven business», explains Seb Beloe, partner and head of research at WHEB. «Our mission is to advance sustainability and create prosperity through positive impact investments».
WHEB’s three impact investment funds only invest in environmental and social investment themes. The total assets under management amounted to €1.57bn at the end of February 2023.
The ESG investment approach is integrated by a stewardship strategy. For WHEB, stewardship is achieved through 5 elements:
- Allocation of capital, investing in solutions to sustainability challenges;
- Proxy voting, exercising shareholder voting rights at annual general meetings;
- Company engagement, entering into dialogue with investee companies bilaterally and with other investors, on a collaborative basis, using escalation tactics where appropriate;
- Public policy and industry engagement, broadly aimed at the wider financial system, indirectly supporting positive impact businesses;
- Reporting, i.e. communicating efforts back to investors.
Collaborative engagement in the fourth quarter of 2022 included successful initiatives, such as an inquiry into the use of monkey labor for coconut harvesting within the supply chain of HelloFresh and the request for an update regarding the progress made on biodiversity strategy by Vestas, which is still ongoing.