Pinsent Masons expands ESG expertise with sustainable finance consultancy acquisition

updated on 24 January 2023

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Pinsent Masons LLP has acquired sustainable finance consultancy Morgan Green Advisory (MGA) to make the most of increasing demand for environmental, social and governance (ESG) advice in the legal sector.

MGA’s 25 expert consultants, specialising in international sustainable finance, will join Pinsent and Masons’ climate and sustainability team, launched in 2020.

According to a joint press statement, Pinsent Masons’ climate and sustainability “provides a holistic approach to advising clients on their decarbonisation and broader sustainability and ESG activities spanning supply chains, reporting requirements, tax, intellectual property and risk management”.

This decision is part of a wider trend – that is, the City’s top professional service firms are vying to increase their presence in the ESG market as large businesses face heightened sustainability goals.

Commenting on the acquisition, Michael Watson, head of climate and sustainability at Pinsent Masons said: “New financial sustainability regulations, standards and changing stakeholder expectations are driving significant demand for complex sustainability advice and support. From the very beginning, it was clear what opportunities were available by partnering with MGA and their specialist sustainable finance expertise.”

The regulations Watson refers to were set by former Chancellor Rishi Sunak at COP 26, the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference. COP 26 established that listed companies and private firms with more than 500 staff and more than £500 million in turnover will be expected, from 2023 onwards, to outline detailed plans to reach net zero by 2050.

MGA’s founder Hayden Morgan, who’ll join Pinsent Masons as a partner, added: “Increasing development of sustainability standards and growth in regulation and reporting means that this market will continue to expand on an accelerated basis.”

The deal is part of a wider shift that has seen the distinction between big four accounting firms (EY, PwC, KPMG, and Deloitte) and law firms shrink, as in recent years, these consultancies have built up large scale legal practices.