If we had a clean sheet of paper,
would we really do it the same?
“Imagination is the only key to the future. Without it none exists — with it all things are possible.” —Ida Tarbell
The foundational roots of Radiant were planted well before the broad acknowledgement that a Paradigm Shift was underway. Instinctively, it seemed clear that the impact of environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues on companies would continue to gain ground, facilitated by advancements in data and technology and the ease of access to information. The reality is that we’ve reached a point where evidence has overwhelmingly shown that ignoring the damaging effects our actions have on the environment and society is not an option, and that capitalism at any cost can no longer be tolerated.
We wanted to build a business that would address and progress these forces of change, whose longer-term influences on capital markets are real and necessary. We believe there is growing recognition that, with what we know now, we wouldn’t do it the same.
That’s why we started with a blank sheet of paper.
Conventional thinking won’t fuel innovative ideas. And creativity cannot be unleashed from within the bounds of bureaucracy.
With shifting demographics and the emergence of a stakeholder capitalism mindset, the successful asset management firm of the future will be one that can deliver solutions for its clients that help them achieve their long-term investment goals while driving capital to those enterprises that make our world a better place. We see those two dimensions increasingly becoming intertwined, which is part of the core philosophy of what we call ‘Positive Change Investing’.
WHAT IS POSITIVE CHANGE INVESTING?
“Positive Change Investing” is an active asset management approach targeting those companies that not only exhibit strong financial metrics but are also either leading the way or demonstrating a clear pathway to meaningful and sustainable improvement across key ESG dimensions as a necessary consideration for the viability of their businesses in the long run.
To date, ‘ESG’ has been primarily a measurement at a point in time along one dimension of a company’s business—its operations—based on various (sometimes conflicting) metrics and standards. At a time of continuous change, we need to be more comprehensive and forward thinking in our assessment of the threats and opportunities companies face. It is our fiduciary duty to understand and incorporate a broader set of ESG considerations which have economic implications as well as the power to drive needed innovation and change for societies around the world.
To fulfill our objective of delivering superior risk-adjusted returns and sustainable value creation for our investors, we are steadfast in our dedication to a more comprehensive assessment of ESG principles and the opportunity for positive change for a brighter future. We are certain that companies that cannot or will not adapt to this new ethos will be at a long-term disadvantage.
Positive Change Investing means focusing on companies that are building a better and brighter tomorrow, which we believe will translate into better investment outcomes for our clients as these are the companies that are, or will become, relevant in the face of the great changes that are underfoot.
Positive Change Investing seeks to understand the commitment a business has to driving long-term enterprise value via attention to employee culture and development, strong ethics and governance, honest and ethical treatment of customers and suppliers, preservation and improvement of the environment, and a productive relationship with local and global communities.
Importantly, as the name would suggest, Positive Change is about evolution and transformation. It’s about understanding a company’s path of travel because meaningful, positive change is what drives value over the long term—not only with regard to the enterprise of the company but also with respect to how it conducts its business and the goods and services it produces.
We believe the leaders of the future will be those who are best positioned to navigate the changes brought about by the new Stakeholder Paradigm—the companies willing and able to evolve, at the same time, see the importance of prioritizing alignment across their key stakeholders. Maintaining that balance will be increasingly essential to sustaining competitiveness and growth in a dynamic global marketplace.
THE BEAUTY OF A BLANK SHEET OF PAPER
That’s why we built our business starting with a blank sheet of paper. There is wide-spread acknowledgement amongst most business consulting firms, that established organizations do not adapt to change easily. This is often more evident in larger organizations and in those who have met with success. Success serves as a form of validation, as an anchor to what has worked in the past. Certainly, those who have personally benefited from that success are naturally reluctant to do things differently—instead they cling to the comforts of the past. That’s how ‘status quo’ and ‘business as usual’ become deep-seated defenders against change. But progress is impossible without a willingness and a desire to change.
So, we decided to start fresh, seeking at the outset to combine our many decades of experience as industry practitioners with a creativity, openness and sense of purpose that is increasingly difficult to find at larger organizations – to facilitate new thinking, nimbleness and flexibility in our approach to creating a better organization. Our definition of success is an organization that inspires our employees, engages our clients and compels the companies in which we invest to do better.
Radiant Global Investors is not just another asset manager. We seek to deliver truly sustainable investment results, and, importantly, we are committed to Positive Change—full stop. It is at the center of our approach to investing, in the foundational roots of our firm, and in our cultural views and what we bring to our communities.
Our investment approach serves our conviction in the prosperity of things that matter. We have no interest in hyperbole or gesture divestment. We connect ESG investment theory to real-world outcomes that people care about. Our focus is on information that is meaningful and measurable. We are dedicated to the principle that creating long-term investment value can not only co-exist with, but is driven by positive Environmental, Social and Governance performance.
But we know that better only happens if we make it. This is the fuel to our fire.
Our daily pursuit of companies that will be the winners of tomorrow is for the benefit of our clients, both as an active manager pursuing excess return, and a ‘Beta’ manager concerned with the aggregate health of our economy. We exist to promote a manifest change in the investment industry by modeling next generation ESG thinking and demonstrating the value of cultural resilience and sustainable leadership.
We welcome the new Stakeholder Paradigm as true stewards of investment capital, driven by the opportunity to create long-term investment value as a function of positive environmental and social impact.
We are confident that our dedication and expertise will transform the wealth of the world we live in.
We are Radiant.