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THE NEXT FRONTIER: Elevating ESG Performance in Non-Controlled Joint Ventures in the Natural Resources Sector

TODAY, as environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues take increased prominence and companies invest heavily to reduce their environmental footprints, natural resource companies have made only tentative steps to actively manage and shed light on the ESG performance of their non-controlled joint ventures.

We recently benchmarked 31 large publicly-listed oil and gas, mining, and chemical companies to understand how these firms report on issues related to ESG for non-controlled ventures. We looked at 20 ESG metrics, including emissions, human rights, fatalities, community engagement, and corruption. What we found was that the largest companies in these sectors provide little or no public reporting or commitments on ESG performance in this asset class. While a handful of companies, including Chevron, BP, BHP, and Rio Tinto, have made commendable recent advances, they are the exception rather than the rule. 

The purpose of this briefing paper is to summarize the findings from our benchmarking, describe the key barriers companies face in reporting on and improving ESG performance in their non-controlled ventures, and outline some ideas for addressing these barriers – all while making the case that companies can, and should, do more. 


THE NEXT FRONTIER: Elevating ESG Performance in Non-Controlled Joint Ventures in the Natural Resources Sector

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About the Authors

James Bamford

James Bamford is a Senior Managing Director at Ankura based in Washington, DC. He joined Ankura with the firm’s 2020 acquisition of Water Street Partners, which he co-founded in 2008. Water Street Partners has been independently ranked as the number one global advisor on joint ventures since 2017. Prior to Water Street, he was global co-lead of the Joint Venture & Alliance Practice at McKinsey & Company.

Joshua Kwicinski

Joshua Kwicinski is a Managing Director based in Washington, DC. He has more than a decade of experience in advising on all aspects of the partnership lifecycle, including deal strategy, transaction structuring, ongoing governance, and restructuring/exit. He has advised senior executives and dealmakers at both a corporate and individual JV level across a range of industries, including oil and gas, metals and mining, aerospace and defense, financial services, biotechnology, and others.

Geoff Walker

Geoff Walker is a Senior Managing Director at Ankura based in Washington, DC. He joined Ankura in 2020, following Ankura’s acquisition of Water Street Partners, which he co-founded in 2008. Water Street Partners has been independently ranked as the number one global advisor on joint ventures since 2017. Geoff has extensive experience structuring and restructuring joint ventures and advising clients on maximizing the value of their joint venture portfolios. Geoff serves a global client base primarily of companies in the natural resources sector, including oil and gas, metals and mining, chemicals, utilities, and alternative energy. He is a regular, featured speaker at industry and corporate events and has written extensively on joint ventures.

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