Abris Commits to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

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by KnowESG
KnowESG_Abris Commits to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
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Abris Capital Partners, renowned as a private equity investor with a specialisation in ESG transformation, has unveiled its DEI Code—a set of commitments aimed at fostering value creation for Abris and its portfolio companies through the promotion of best practices in diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).

This milestone follows Abris' recent recognition as a B Corp, a groundbreaking achievement that made it the first private equity firm in Central Europe to attain such status.

The DEI Code delineates six pivotal commitments that encompass aspects such as education, governance, ownership, and processes, ultimately culminating in Abris taking on a leadership role in advancing DEI and inclusion within the private equity landscape. The Code also includes DEI recommendations for advisors and other collaborators working with Abris.

Pawel Gierynski, Managing Partner of Abris, expressed his insights, stating, "The success or failure of our endeavours is ultimately determined by the people involved. By placing people at the forefront, comprehending their unique needs, and by establishing an organisation that treats everyone as equals, we not only adapt to the challenges of a changing world but also optimise value creation in our portfolio companies. This is the driving force behind the development of our DEI Code."

The DEI Code, crafted by the Abris DEI Working Group in collaboration with external experts, is a practical programme designed to yield observable and measurable results through Abris' proprietary ESG Scoring Application. This innovative tool empowers the firm to maximise the impact of its DEI initiatives, harnessing diverse intellectual potential to foster inclusive teams capable of delivering exceptional performance.

Abris has committed to realising these six objectives across its portfolio companies, commencing in 2023:

  • Fostering a culture of "DEI Readiness" through education, internal dialogue, and the application of industry-leading practices.

  • Ensuring that at least 30% of the underrepresented gender is represented on supervisory boards and in leadership roles within portfolio companies.

  • Appointing the Chief People Officer (CPO) as a Management Board member in each portfolio company to elevate HR and DEI concerns to a strategic level.

  • Establishing formalised and transparent HR systems with DEI components relevant to the industry within each portfolio company.

  • Prioritising continuous learning through monitoring and reporting facilitated by the ESG Scoring Application.

  • Taking a proactive role in promoting DEI in the private equity ecosystem and incorporating DEI principles into relationships with advisors.

Abris aspires to be at the forefront of ESG development in the private equity sector. Their ongoing DEI initiatives have already yielded significant results, with the proportion of women in management positions at portfolio companies rising from 26% in 2021 to an impressive 49% in 2022.

Additionally, all Abris businesses have implemented DEI training over the past year. The DEI Code is envisioned to build upon these achievements, further enhancing inclusion and establishing best practices throughout the entire Abris portfolio.

Robert Sroka, Value Enhancement Partner at Abris, emphasised the significance of DEI, noting, "Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) may be one of the most challenging aspects of ESG, but it is unquestionably one of the most critical. Beyond the evident societal imperatives for prioritising DEI, research unequivocally demonstrates that diverse teams consistently outperform homogeneous ones.

"However, our ultimate goal goes beyond diversity alone; it's about fostering genuine inclusion. When we achieve truly inclusive workplaces, management decisions, strategic direction, and HR policies will be shaped by diverse, united, motivated, aware, and engaged teams. That, ultimately, is our vision."

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Source: Abris

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