Onex has been a responsible investor for 37 years and views sound governance and good environmental and social practices as key tenets of successful investing.
Onex’ leadership supports the continuous enhancement of the Environmental, Social and Governance (“ESG”) program, which is stewarded by the Head of ESG and the ESG Committee. The ESG Committee has membership from each investing platform and the corporate office. In addition to enhancing Onex’ holistic approach to ESG, the Committee enables the sharing of best practices across investment platforms and all private equity operating companies. The Head of ESG is a resource to the wider firm on ESG matters and initiatives.
Onex is a Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (“SASB”) Alliance Member and has also adopted the American Investment Council Guidelines for Responsible Investing (“AIC Guidelines”). With a global, sophisticated investor base and investment platforms that include industry leading businesses in a wide variety of sectors, we strive to apply and share principles of our environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) framework across our business. All our investing platforms integrate ESG factors into their investment analysis.
We encourage environmental stewardship and protection throughout the businesses in which our platforms invest.
Protect our people
We support an equal, diverse, inclusive and safe work environment.
Be ethical and transparent
We adhere and expect the businesses in which we invest to adhere to the highest level of ethical conduct, fairness and transparency.
Monitor and manage
Across our platforms, we seek to engage in an ESG dialogue with the companies we are analyzing and/or investing in to understand how they manage their most material ESG issues and will monitor the results. Onex’ private equity funds require all operating companies to develop, adopt and maintain effective ESG programs supported by annual reporting and certifications. In addition, starting with our Onex Partners V fund, we produce annual reports to our private equity Limited Partners on operating company ESG KPIs.
As a publicly listed company since 1987, our governance policies have consistently evolved and expanded to ensure our practices meet or exceed regulatory requirements. In 2016, we adopted the AIC Guidelines, which were developed under the umbrella of the United Nations-backed Principles for Responsible Investing (“UN PRI”) and United Nations Global Compact. In 2020, Onex Credit acquired Falcon Investment Advisors, which has been a UN PRI signatory since 2012. In 2017, we established our Integrated ESG Framework. In 2019, Onex’ leadership supported the firm to become a SASB Alliance Member. SASB is the leading framework to bring standards and transparency to the financial impacts of sustainability. SASB membership allows Onex to develop and explore best practices to integrate material sustainability information into existing processes. As an Alliance Member, not merely an adopter, we share the belief in the need for a standardized sustainability framework and effective ESG integration into investment practices for the benefit of both companies and investors. We formally consider the SASB financially material and industry specific metrics across our investment platforms throughout the investing lifecycle. Our private equity strategies also consider new investment alignment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and consideration of physical and transitional climate change impacts per Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosure (“TCFD”) definitions. These steps did not mark a change in how we do business or our view as to the importance of responsible investing, but rather are formal acknowledgements of the standards we have always believed are fundamental to successful investing.
We invest our own capital and that of investors from around the world, including public and private pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, insurance companies, family offices and high net worth individuals. We recognize that integrating ESG considerations into investment decisions can have a direct influence in creating value and mitigating risk for our shareholders and investors. We consider SASB’s financially material and industry specific issue areas across our investment platforms throughout the investing lifecycle. We also avoid investments which we believe provide harmful or unacceptable products or services.
Investor & Asset Manager
As an investor and asset manager, we understand that developing stronger and more stable companies facilitates growth, risk mitigation and improved results. We understand the positive impact ethical and stable companies can have in bolstering local communities, workforces and society in general.
With 37 years of investment and management experience, we have developed a successful approach to investing within each of our platforms. Our private equity funds pursue opportunities in partnership with talented management teams to effect change and build market leaders. Our private equity funds typically acquire a control position, which allows us to drive important initiatives, such as improved ESG standards, and effectively support change at our businesses. Our credit platform makes non-control investments and seek to engage with company management on ESG matters.
Responsible Investor & Respected Community Member
We are committed to our stakeholders – shareholders, investors, employees, operating companies and the communities we operate in. We also have the opportunity and motivation to be mindful of ESG issues, which form an important part of our investment and management decisions. We believe responsible investing requires ongoing discussion and continuous learning and improvement.
Responsible Investing & Environment
Onex has formally adopted the AIC Guidelines and SASB metrics to systematically consider ESG risks and opportunities in potential investments while also relying on our operational depth and lengthy experience as an asset manager.
All Onex investment platforms perform extensive due diligence and research on prospective investments to identify and address significant risks and opportunities, including ESG matters, using internal experts as well as external legal reviews, environmental studies and/or other specialist advice as appropriate. We also avoid investments which we believe provide harmful or unacceptable products or services.
Across our platforms, we seek to engage in ESG dialogue with potential and existing investments to understand how material ESG issues are managed. Onex’ private equity funds have developed an ESG Due Diligence Questionnaire that is completed on every operating company in which they invest. The identification of key ESG risks and the development of a post-closing plan to address them, is part of our investment approval process. Our private credit and wealth management platforms consider ESG factors throughout the investing lifecycle.
The SASB disclosure topics serve as the starting point for deal teams in the diligence and monitoring of ESG issue areas:
|SASB Dimension||SASB Disclosure Topic|
Water & Wastewater Management
Waste & Hazardous Materials Mgmt.
Human Rights & Community Relations
Access & Affordability
Product Quality & Safety
Selling Practices & Product Labeling
Employee Health & Safety
Employee Engagement, Diversity & Inclusion
|Business Model & Innovation||
Product Design & Lifecycle Management
Business Model Resilience
Supply Chain Management
Materials Sourcing & Efficiency
Physical Impacts of Climate Change
|Leadership & Governance||
Mgmt. of the Legal & Regulatory Environment
Critical Incident Risk Management
Systemic Risk Management
Responsible governance throughout Onex and across our investing platforms is fundamental to the success of our organization. As an investor and asset manager, Onex, our team members and our investors demand a high level of governance oversight, which builds trust and confidence in Onex’ stewardship of capital.
Maintaining sound governance practices requires continual assessment of governance trends, regulations and recommended practices and how they can be applied to our business. Equally important for Onex is to monitor, understand and apply lessons learned from governance successes and miscues experienced throughout our organization and our industry. Our private equity funds’ governance structure for controlled operating businesses include the following core elements:
- Majority independent boards and committees that meet quarterly or more frequently if required;
- Quarterly and annual audits of financial statements in accordance with IFRS principles; and
- Corporate governance policies, including whistleblower, codes of business conduct and ethics, anti-bribery, anti-corruption and environmental policies, backed up by appropriate training and testing programs, must be implemented with any material issues reported directly to Onex’ private equity funds.
We also maintain strict conflict of interest, technology usage/cybersecurity and anti-harassment policies, which are reinforced to Onex team members through:
- Quarterly compliance certifications;
- Anti-sexual harassment training;
- Code of conduct and ethics training; and
- Cybersecurity training.
Diversity & Inclusion
Onex recognizes that a diverse team and inclusive environment is a competitive advantage and contributes to our continued success as an investor and asset manager. We believe that diverse perspectives create better business outcomes for us and our stakeholders, including the companies we invest in, our shareholders, investors and clients, as well as the communities we serve.
Onex’ commitment to diversity and inclusion includes increasing our focus on attracting and retaining employees from diverse backgrounds, creating additional awareness of diversity issues and benefits, fostering and inspiring a more supportive environment where inclusivity is expected and prioritized, and embedding accountability for diversity throughout the firm.
Onex has established a Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Council, which includes representation across all business platforms and geographies. The Council is responsible for championing diversity and inclusion across the firm, including supporting the development and success of Onex’ employee resource groups.
Onex is proud to be a signatory of the Institutional Limited Partners Association (ILPA)’s Diversity in Action initiative, a program that unites limited partner and general partners who share a commitment to advancing DE&I in private equity.
WOMEN AT ONEX
We encourage and support Onex employees to be charitable, both with their time and their capital, to important causes in our communities. Onex team members across our Toronto, New York, New Jersey, Boston and London offices directly participate in, and are encouraged to volunteer their time to, local charitable causes and community-based initiatives, including supporting shelters for abused women and families, homeless outreach programs, hospital fundraising initiatives, tutoring and mentorship programs, and various food and clothing drives. Many Onex team members, both senior and junior, also volunteer in leadership roles of numerous charitable boards and committees. See the Onex in the Community page for more details.