Thomson Reuters buys governance data firm

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Thomson Reuters has bought Asset4, which gathers data on companies’ economic, social and governance performance, to meet increasing client demands for ESG information.

“It’s a space we’ve been monitoring for a few years,” said Abel Clark, head of strategy and marketing at Thomson Reuters’ investment and advisory division.

“Wind back the clock a few years and requests for this kind of data were few and far between, but now it’s becoming integral to the mainstream.”

“Pension funds and asset managers came under pressure partly thanks to the UN Principles for Responsible Investing,” said Peter Ohnemus, founder and chief executive of Asset4. “But the key driver is no longer the PRI. The broader industry is starting to move.”

As a result, Asset4 has seen its business grow to the point where it needed more resources to manage the distribution.

“The reason we have decided to exit now to Thomson Reuters is we need to scale up and enter the mainstream,” said Mr Ohnemus.

“Asset4 has lately signed up asset managers you would not normally associate with this topic and we need more distribution.”

Both Asset4 and Thomson Reuters declined to give any financial details of the deal.

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