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SASB founder Jean Rogers to lead Blackstone’s ESG efforts

Rogers will leave the sustainability reporting group she helped launch to join Blackstone in January.

Blackstone has hired the founder of reporting framework the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board as its new head of ESG.

Jean Rogers will join in January to lead Blackstone’s corporate ESG team and will work across its business groups to lead the integration of sustainability reporting and engagement, according to a statement by the firm. Rogers helped launch SASB, a non-profit that supports US investors in disclosing sustainability reporting.

Blackstone has sought to burnish its ESG credentials over the past year, as an increasing number of investors seek asset managers committed to making investments viewed as sustainable and beneficial to communities and the environment.

In April, the firm announced four new ESG-related hires, as well as an internal promotion to strengthen its staff’s sustainable investing experience. It also informed chief executives of portfolio companies within its private equity group of new quarterly reporting requirements – an initiative its real estate group implemented in 2019. At around the same time, Alison Fenton-Willock stepped down from her role as global head of ESG to join KKR’s senior ESG management team.

In June, the firm added a global head of diversity, equity and inclusion: former attorney Devin Glenn, who joined as a managing director after 15 years at law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. Last month, Blackstone recruited Amisha Parekh, a former sustainability data specialist at Bloomberg’s professional services group, as its new global head of ESG for private equity.

On the investment side, Blackstone agreed to acquire Sphera, a Chicago-based ESG software, data and consulting services provider, in July for $1.4 billion from private equity firm Genstar Capital.