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Asset Manager of the Year Benedict Buckley on ESG Investing & High-Quality Businesses

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The ClearBridge Large Cap Growth ESG strategy is led by a portfolio management team that includes Mary Jane McQuillen, a longtime leader in the field, and ClearBridge’s ESG investing programs date back to 1997, according to Benedict Buckley, vice president and equity analyst.

The firm aims to stay invested in the strategy’s holdings “for the long-term —up to five years, preferably more if we can,” he says. These holdings are “really high-quality businesses that we think are mispriced in the market and also are exhibiting positive criteria from an ESG perspective.”

In general, ClearBridge analysts communicate regularly with the management teams of firms in its portfolio. “We have over 1,000 meetings a year with CEOs and CFO of companies,” Buckley said.

Because the firm is a large shareholder in some of its holdings, it has “great access to the management teams,” he explained. “They know we’re long-term investors that have the same ultimate goal as they do — to see the company be successful.”