Gibson Dunn welcomes the zeitgeist with the introduction of the transatlantic ESG observe
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher has responded to the ever increasing demand for environmental, social and governance (ESG) skills by introducing a specialized practice led by a team of its lawyers based in the US and London.
The new offering, which aims to provide customers with holistic advice on corporate responsibility, risks and opportunities, is being offered by London partners Susy Bullock and Selina Sagayam, Senior Counsel of Dallas, Ronald Kirk, Partner of Los Angeles, Perlette Jura, and Washington DC partners Elizabeth Ising and Michael Murphy.
The move comes at a time when ESG is increasingly high on the corporate agenda, amid increasing pressure from stakeholders and regulators to demonstrate leadership across the board.
Law firm leaders have come to realize in recent years that paying lip service to issues like environmental sustainability is not enough to attract and retain talented younger lawyers.
Elizabeth Ising said, ‘ESG has become a key performance metric and investment strategy due to its growing focus on long-term value creation. Companies and their leaders must increasingly implement and disclose robust processes and frameworks in order to meet the growing number of rules, standards and expectations that apply at national, regional and global levels. ‘
ESG came to the fore during the coronavirus crisis at a time when ethical governance has been scrutinized more than ever. Susy Bullock said: ‘The pandemic has helped demonstrate that integrating ESG into strategy is business critical. Issues of corporate purpose and what constitutes good governance are being considered in the context of an active debate on stakeholder capitalism and a growing debate on ESG-related litigation. “
“The accelerated pace of sustainable finance and investment is being driven not only by the private sector but also by regulators and governments, and we are seeing its impact on the credit, insurance and investment industries,” concluded Selina Sagayam. ‘Increasingly, capital flows are aimed at borrowers and asset managers who understand sustainability issues and manage them effectively. The growth and innovation in “Green Finance” are unprecedented and signal a comprehensive change in the way the financial markets function as well as the generation of new and exciting new markets for our customers. ‘