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OneVentures launches new Responsible Investment Policy, putting the company’s money where the future is

Since inception, OneVentures has operated with a guiding purpose at the core of our investment philosophy: we invest in innovative companies in the healthcare and technology space that are focused on solving large-scale societal problems.

In doing so, we acknowledge the strong linkage between risk associated with ESG factors and building strong, long term value in businesses and ultimately returns for our investors. We also acknowledge the impact our decisions have today through our investments.

We are not only providing rigour around our ESG assessment and management but are moving beyond the core ESG tenants of “do-no-harm” to assessing our portfolio and future investments under the 18 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (otherwise known as the SDGs) as a framework to support further measurement of societal benefit.

Source: UN SDG

Examples of where our companies actively support UN sustainable goals include health and wellbeing, access to quality education and health, equality and fairness in the workplace and lower consumption of resources.

Investment assessment at time of selection will now include negative screens for ESG risks along with positive screens to portfolio applicants and ensure that their business purposes align with the Sustainable Development Goals.

Our new Responsible Investment policy calls for active engagement with our investee companies on ESG risk identification and mitigation practices with monitoring through our portfolio company boards. Through the policy, we aim to bring greater awareness of ESG opportunities and risks to the management teams of our portfolio companies. We will annually measure our portfolios progress towards improving on their ESG risk areas. We will report this to our investors for full transparency and accountability. Ultimately, we believe this will drive better risk-adjusted returns.

For us, partnering with a company is about more than just providing capital. We always ask ourselves how our expertise — whether it be strategic and operational expertise, technology or healthcare related — can be leveraged by the company. Being hands-on ensures good board-level oversight, allows us to embed key ESG requirements into our investment documentation, portfolio company board reporting and to build industry-leading ESG investment reporting frameworks.

Our team is passionate about providing our portfolio companies with the financial and strategic support to help them achieve their goals, remain accountable and generate strong value returns in the long term.

Since launching OneVentures’ first fund in 2010 — the OneVentures Innovation Fund I — we have invested over $280 million in 31 early-stage and growth-stage companies with a further $270M available to invest across both venture equity and debt. Our portfolio now includes businesses tackling multi-billion dollar world problems such as Vaxxas, who are solving a global problem by providing an alternative to needle/syringe vaccine delivery.

While our investments spur on the development of the next generation of game-changing companies and household names, we aim to regularly review and update our reporting and the Policy to help shape best-practice ESG in venture capital. After all, responsible investing is smart investing, and the benchmarks of good sustainability and governance will keep rising and evolving in the years to come.

To find out more about OneVentures’ ESG and Responsible Investment Policy, please click here.

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Michelle Deaker

Managing Partner of venture capital firm OneVentures. We invest in transformative technology and healthcare companies creating lasting gains for society.