By Greg Roumeliotis and Simon Jessop
NEW YORK/LONDON – Private equity investor KKR said on Thursday that sustainable investing executive Elizabeth Seeger is leaving to join global standard-setter the International Sustainability Standards Board.
Seeger, a 13-year veteran of the New York-based company who has co-led efforts to embed management of environmental, social and governance-related (ESG) issues into the firm’s investment process, is set to take up her new role in November.
Launched at global climate talks last November, the Frankfurt-based International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) aims to set the global standard for corporate disclosures on sustainability issues, initially focusing on environmental data that can help in the fight against climate change.
Agreeing a common set of disclosures will make it easier for investors, lenders and regulators to see how companies are managing environmental risk, and allow better performers to be more readily identified across regions.
Seeger, who joined KKR in 2009 from the non-profit Environmental Defense Fund, has built out the company’s ESG team alongside Ken Mehlman, tripling dedicated headcount in 2021 to 17. Both will now work to find Seeger’s replacement.
“Joining the ISSB is a once-in-a lifetime opportunity to have an even greater role in doing the important work I love,” Seeger said in a statement.
“Investors need relevant and reliable information on companies’ sustainability performance. Enabling this is the mission of the ISSB and I am very excited for this new challenge.”
Seeger will join 13 other board members at the ISSB, chaired by former Danone chief executive Emmanuel Faber.
Separately on Thursday, the European Parliament’s legal affairs committee backed Patrick de Cambourg’s candidacy to chair the new Sustainability Reporting Board at the European Union’s EFRAG advisory body.
The board is fleshing out corporate sustainability disclosures rules which companies in the EU will apply.
De Cambourg is a former president of France’s accounting standard-setting body ANC, and of French accounting firm Mazars.
(Reporting by Greg Roumeliotis and Simon Jessop; Additional reporting by Huw Jones; Editing by Susan Fenton)