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Private Equity Firm Paine Schwartz Hires Head of Sustainability: 5 Things to Know

July 12, 2023 by Joe Panettieri

Paine Schwartz Partners, which focuses on sustainable food chain and agribusiness investing, has hired Blackstone and Apollo Global Management veteran Rachel Hurley as head of sustainability.

Here are five things to know about Hurley and Paine Schwartz Partners.

1. Business Scope and Scale: Private equity firm Paine Schwartz Partners, with offices in New York and San Mateo, California, invests in the global food and agribusiness sectors. The company has invested more than $4.7 billion in the food and agriculture sector. Along the way, the firm often partners with family owned and/or operated businesses. At present, Paine Schwartz has $5.5 billion in assets under management across 30 platform companies and 84 investments.

2. Sustainability and ESG Strategy: Paine Schwartz has published an annual sustainability and social responsibility report since 2018. The company leverages the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) guidance for the Food and Beverage Industry. Looking ahead, Paine Schwartz is undergoing a gap analysis to leverage Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) down the road.

3. Rachel Hurley's Role and Experience: Hurley most recently served on the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) team at Blackstone, and previously served on the ESG team at Apollo Global Management, her new employer noted. As head of sustainability at Paine Schwartz, Hurley will focus on "driving ESG value creation across Paine Schwartz portfolio companies and lead firmwide sustainability and social responsibility strategy and initiatives," the company said.

4. Overall Team Expansion: Hurley is one of three key team updates that the company shared this week. The additional roles include Adrian Cox as chief transformation officer, and Therisa George has joined the firm as a director on the investment team.

Kevin Schwart, CEO, Paine Schwartz Partners

5. Executive Perspectives: In a prepared statement about the team members, CEO Kevin Schwartz said: “The appointments of Rachel, Adrian and Therisa demonstrate our commitment to adding top talent across the firm. We are pleased to welcome these exceptional leaders to Paine Schwartz and are confident they will make significant contributions to sustainable value creation at both the firm and at our portfolio companies. We look forward to continuing to bring in leaders with strategically differentiated expertise as we build on our leadership in sustainable food and agribusiness investing and move our fast-growing team to Paine Schwartz’s new headquarters in SoHo, New York, this summer.”

New Sustainability Leader: Why Technology Partners Should Care

By 2027, 25% of Global 2000 companies will have assigned a chief sustainability officer (CSO) responsible for meeting their organization’s ESG goals and making ESG-related IT purchasing decisions, according to IDC.

Technology partners need to extend their sales, marketing, engagement and support strategies to successfully fulfill those CSO needs, Sustainable Tech Partner believes.

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