Investing in Equality: Integrating LGBT Issues into Total Portfolio Activation
A group of investors has released a new white paper, Investing in Equality: Integrating LGBT Issues into Total Portfolio Activation. The paper was prepared by Croatan Institute with the guidance of the Social Justice Fund Northwest, Out Leadership, and Trillium Asset Management. Microsoft Corporation is profiled for its history of leadership in advancing LGBT rights.
The paper provides a framework to help impact investors expand the scope of investing in LGBT issues across asset classes. It is the first effort to structure a total portfolio approach thematically around LGBT equality.
Research by Credit Suisse has shown that investing in businesses that proactively provide LGBT-friendly work environments does not result in a sacrifice in investment returns. As studies begin to make a strong case for investing in LGBT equality, impact investors are beginning to think holistically about their entire diversified investment portfolios. By using the Total Portfolio Activation framework, investors can identify opportunities to integrate LGBT issues across the full spectrum of asset classes.
“This paper highlights both current opportunities to invest in LGBT issues and gaps where new innovations are primed to emerge,” said Kristin Lang, Associate at Croatan Institute. “We hope that investors and foundations alike can use the Total Portfolio Activation framework as a blueprint for crafting their own investment strategies that positively impact the LGBT community.”
“We know that integrating LGBT issues into investment decisions generates positive social impacts with growing evidence of positive impact on financial returns”, said Matt Patsky, CEO of Trillium Asset Management. “The Total Portfolio Activation framework allows investors to expand their scope of impact and support LGBT equality across numerous asset classes.”
“LGBT inclusion helps build business, which is why businesses have been so far ahead of the curve when it comes to including LGBT people”, said Todd Sears, Founder and Principal of Out Leadership. “Companies that adopt inclusive policies for their LGBT employees outperform the market – in part because the most talented people seek out diverse work environments, and because companies where diverse perspectives are welcome are more innovative.”
“Microsoft has long been committed to constructive dialogue with our shareholders and was an early leader in implementing inclusive policies around issues of concern to the LGBT community”, said Dan Bross, Senior Director of Business and Corporate Responsibility at Microsoft.
“As a philanthropic foundation, we have a responsibility to align our investments with our values. Filing shareholder resolutions that support the causes and principles of our grantees allows us to leverage our resources to create lasting change. We hope to join with other institutional investors who are looking to take the first step”, said Mijo Lee, Executive Director of the Social Justice Fund Northwest.
For more information: Caroline White, Trillium Asset Management, firstname.lastname@example.org
Croatan Institute is an independent nonprofit research institute, working at the critical nexus where finance, environmental sustainability, and social equity intersect. Based in the Research Triangle of North Carolina with an extended team of affiliates in Boston, New York, San Francisco, and Geneva, the Institute provides rigorous research and analysis to support strategic decision-making by organizations and practitioners in the field. To learn more, please visit www.croataninstitute.org.
Microsoft Corporation is a technology software company based in Redmond, Washington that develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products, services and devices. To learn more, please visit www.microsoft.com.
Out Leadership is a global LGBT business advisory organization that partners with the world’s most influential companies to build business opportunities, cultivate talent, and drive LGBT equality forward. To learn more, please visit www.outleadership.com.
Social Justice Fund Northwest is a member-funded foundation focused on progressive social change. The foundation works to foster significant, long-term social justice solutions throughout Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. To learn more, please visit www.socialjusticefund.org.
Founded in 1982, Trillium Asset Management is the oldest independent investment advisor focused exclusively on sustainable and responsible investing. Trillium manages assets for clients including individuals, foundations, endowments, religious institutions, and other non-profits. To learn more, please visit www.trilliuminvest.com.
 Julia Dawson, et al. “LGBT: The Value of Diversity,” Credit Suisse ESG Research, April 15, 2016.
The information provided is not a recommendation to buy or sell the securities mentioned. The securities were selected on an objective basis for illustrative purposes and do not represent all of the securities purchased, sold or recommended. It should not be assumed that investments in the securities has been or will be profitable.