UBS Wealth Management Americas Partners with Rethink Impact to Contribute to Raising Industry s Largest1 Impact Investing Fund with Gender Lens Overlay #largest #wealth #management #firms


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UBS Wealth Management Americas Partners with Rethink Impact to Contribute to Raising Industry’s Largest1Impact Investing Fund with Gender Lens Overlay

March 08, 2017 11:44 AM Eastern Standard Time

NEW YORK–( BUSINESS WIRE )–UBS Wealth Management Americas partnered with Rethink Impact, a venture capital fund, to contribute to raising $110+million, more than half of which came from UBS clients, including high net worth individuals, family offices, private foundations, and universities, for the closing of Rethink Impact. Rethink Impact is an impact investing venture capital fund investing in gender diverse, tech-enabled companies working to solve the world’s biggest challenges based on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

Rethink Impact, invests in social impact companies with a gender lens. The fund is particularly focused on the health, education, environmental sustainability and economic empowerment sectors and includes companies that merge strong businesses with a social mission. Rethink Impact investors span the majority of the states across the country, are balanced in terms of gender and are a mix of individuals, foundations, universities and beyond.

Impact investing aims to generate a defined positive social or environmental impact as well as a competitive return. It is an attractive area for investors who wish to align their portfolios with their values.

“We prioritize financial returns above all else for our clients,” said John Amore, Managing Director UBS Wealth Management Americas, “Yet fundamentally, we believe in companies whose social impact enhances their financial returns and whose financial returns fuel their social impact. Our clients increasingly want financial advice as well as innovative solutions to utilize their wealth and resources to address societal issues. As the world’s largest global wealth manager, we are well positioned to guide them and felt that Rethink Impact was a compelling solution given our clients’ investment and impact goals.”

Research shows that female-led businesses outperform. On average, firms with 30% female leadership see net revenues 15% higher than firms with no female leaders. 2 Despite this, little capital goes to female-led firms, with only 3% of venture dollars going to companies with a female CEO 3 and fewer than 6% of people making investment decisions at venture capital firms are women. 4

Jenny Abramson, Founder Managing Partner of Rethink Impact said, “My partner, Heidi Patel, and our team believe that the next generation of extraordinary companies will find success through their diversity coupled with relentless pursuit of mission, for the benefit of all communities. There has never been a better time to enter the field of impact investing. The problems that these companies address are still so vast, but now we’re seeing more and more seasoned entrepreneurs partnering up with top engineering talent to tackle these issues head on, in a scalable and sustainable way. This creates a ripe opportunity for investment for firms that really understand the sector.”

UBS is helping to mainstream impact investing in response to demand from clients and from the community. At the World Economic Forum’s Annual 2017 Meeting in Davos, UBS committed to direct at least $5 billion of client assets into new SDG-related impact investments over the next five years. Other examples of impact investing milestones where UBS has been involved include the Oncology Impact Fund, the UBS Optimus Foundation’s Development Impact Bond, the Loans for Growth fund, a public-private model providing loans to SME’s and co-funded by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), the G8-affiliated Social Impact Investment Taskforce and the WEF’s reports on mainstreaming impact investing. UBS has also integrated impact investing into its regular sustainable investing reports and Opinion Leaders white papers.

As of 31 December 2016, UBS’s sustainable investments increased to CHF 976 billion compared with CHF 934 billion as of the end of 2015, representing 35% of the firm’s total invested assets. Major increases in relative terms were observed among the integration and impact investments, which increased 64% and 228%, respectively, compared with 2015.

1 According to B Lab as of March 1, 2017.

2 Marcus Noland, Tyler Moran, Barbara Kotschwar, Is Gender Diversity Profitable? Evidence from a Global Survey. (Washington, D.C. Peterson Institute for International Economics, February 2016)

3 Candida G. Brush, Patricia G. Greene, Lakshmi Balanchandra, Women Entrepreneurs 2014: Bridging the Gender Gap in Venture Capital (Boston, MA: Babson College, September 2014)

4 Dan Primack, Venture Capital Still Has a Big Problem With Women (New York: Fortune Magazine, April 1, 2016)

Notes to editors

About UBS Wealth Management Americas

Wealth Management Americas is one of the leading wealth managers in the Americas in terms of financial advisor productivity and invested assets. Its business includes UBS’s domestic US and Canadian wealth management businesses, as well as international business booked in the US. It provides a fully integrated set of wealth management solutions designed to address the needs of ultra high net worth and high net worth clients.

UBS provides financial advice and solutions to wealthy, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as private clients in Switzerland. The operational structure of the Group is comprised of our Corporate Center and five business divisions: Wealth Management, Wealth Management Americas, Personal Corporate Banking, Asset Management and the Investment Bank. UBS’s strategy builds on the strengths of all of its businesses and focuses its efforts on areas in which it excels, while seeking to capitalize on the compelling growth prospects in the businesses and regions in which it operates, in order to generate attractive and sustainable returns for its shareholders. All of its businesses are capital-efficient and benefit from a strong competitive position in their targeted markets.

UBS is present in all major financial centers worldwide. It has offices in 54 countries, with about 34% of its employees working in the Americas, 35% in Switzerland, 18% in the rest of Europe, the Middle East and Africa and 13% in Asia Pacific. UBS Group AG employs approximately 60,000 people around the world. Its shares are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

About Rethink Impact

Rethink Impact is a venture capital fund that invests in social impact companies with the potential to deliver market-rate financial returns for investors alongside transformational social and environmental change. There are two main lenses for Rethink Impact’s investments: gender diverse management teams and technology enabled businesses. The fund is focused on the health, education, sustainability, and economic empowerment sectors. The leadership team and Investment Committee have experience operating and investing in impact companies.

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Threat to law firms as PwC, KPMG expand legal capabilities, cloud services for law firms.#Cloud #services #for #law #firms


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Threat to law firms as PwC, KPMG expand legal capabilities

PwC Australia and KPMG are expanding their legal practices which threatens to divert major sources of work from top law firms.

Five partners recently left several traditional law firms to join PwC Australia, which is pursuing an aggressive lateral-hiring strategy.

In reply, law firms are fighting the competition and keeping top talent by developing closer ties with professional services firms.

PwC’s new hires include four Melbourne-based partners Cameron Whittfield and Damian McNair formerly of Gilbert and Tobin, Tiffany Barton of Ashurst, Ashley Poke of Baker & McKenzie and Sydney-based James Delesclefs of Corrs Chambers Westgarth.

PwC legal services leader Tony O’Malley said aside from building up its corporate advisory, projects, regulatory and employment and immigration pillars, it was making a foray into capital markets transactions, which KPMG has already done.

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PwC is expanding services in real estate advisory, infrastructure and technology which were stronger areas of growth than the firm initially realised.

While the professional services firms have no plans to enter areas like banking and finance or corporate litigation which absorbs up to 30 per cent of the work of major firms, Mr O’Malley said law firms would increasingly struggle to retain top talent who saw advantages for clients in multi-disciplinary offerings.

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Market evolving

The firm has grown its legal team to 12 partners and more than 60 lawyers over the past 18 months. Mr O’Malley said the initial plan was to double that to around 25 partners and 100 lawyers, but the numbers could be revised much higher following a review.

Meanwhile Ernst & Young has grown its partner numbers by 26 per cent in the past year to 28 partners, 33 directors and 204 lawyers in its Asia Pacific legal division. KPMG has around 30 partners.

Head of KPMG law David Morris said it was swelling its key practices and lawyer numbers in mergers and acquisitions, equity capital markets, corporate advisory, employment, real estate, regulatory, financial services, competition as well as growing its newer technology and tax litigation practices.

In a sign that law firms are seeking to reel in the competitive threat of professional services, Mr Morris said some of the more “progressive firms” were seeking to develop ties with it.

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PwC has had similar approaches. Mr O’Malley said it was symptomatic of disruption in the legal services market at the moment.

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Like law firms, both PwC and KPMG were investigating technology to commoditise lower level tasks, create online offerings and more flexible workforces.

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Mr Whittfield said there was also a more advanced approach towards creative billing compared to law firms that would benefit clients.

“Law firms are at an inflection point, they can’t underestimate the power of bringing over quality talent, with the lateral hiring going on we are in for major changes in the industry,” he said.


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The 2016 Top 500 Design Firms

The market for large architectural and engineering firms is healthy, with a few exceptions. The buildings market for architects and engineers continues to grow at a measured pace, and the passage of the federal Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, as well as progress in Congress on other federal infrastructure funding initiatives, have many engineering firms in the infrastructure markets optimistic. While low oil prices have depressed the markets for big-ticket oil and gas work and the power market seems sluggish, most U.S. architectural and engineering firms are in a good frame of mind.

However, there is concern about the future. The U.S. economy is not robust, and there are concerns about what impact the outcome of the presidential election will have on regulations and the market. Also, economic and political turmoil abroad could have a significant impact on the domestic market. And within the architectural and engineering professions, there are trends that have many firms concerned about their role in the construction process.

The table below shows only rankings and firm name. For complete data from the Top 500 Design Firms list see the following links.

Companies are ranked according to revenue for design services performed in 2015 in $ millions (*). Those with subsidiaries are indicated by (†). For information on subsidiaries and where each firm worked outside of the U.S. see www.enr.com. **Firms not ranked last year. Some markets may not add up to 100% due to omission of “other” miscellaneous market category and rounding. NA-Not available.

Key to type of Firm: A=architect; E=engineer; EC=engineer-contractor; AE=architect-engineer; EA=engineer-architect; ENV=environmental; GE=geotechnical engineer; L=landscape architect; P=planner; O=other. Other combinations possible. Firms classified themselves.

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