Fair & Square Podcast: ESG – The Emerging Market Challenge?

The second episode of Hudson Sandler’s Fair and Square podcast starts to look at the overarching challenge and opportunity that the increasing focus on ESG performance presents to businesses around the world.With pressure coming from government, regulators, NGOs and civil society, customers, media and consumers, companies have never been under greater pressure to demonstrate responsibility and transparency.It’s a business-critical issue that is becoming progressively politicised and increasingly urgent.In this first podcast on a subject to which we will return regularly, we introduce some of the communications challenges arising from ESG and the importance of getting it right for all audiences, not least investors and the financial community.

Rupert Krefting, Head of Corporate Finance and Stewardship at M&G Investments outlines the scrutiny that the financial sector is now applying to businesses; Vladimir Zaluzhsky, Director of Communications and IR at Severstal, one of Russia’s leading steel producers, discusses the pressure this is placing on corporates; and Rebecca Gudgeon, a Partner at Hudson Sandler with a focus on sustainability strategy development, examines the communications challenges arising from the global focus on ESG.


Rupert Krefting joined M&G in 2016 as Head of Corporate Finance and Stewardship. M&G manages £320bn with c. £60bn in equities – approximately half is invested in UK listed stocks and half is Global. Rupert qualified as a chartered accountant then worked in investment banking for more than two decades. At M&G, Rupert chairs M&G’s Responsible Investment Advisory Forum and the ESG Oversight Committee which pulls together all M&G’s responsible investment and ESG initiatives internally; externally he represents M&G across a range of national, international and parliamentary groups focused on governance and sustainable investment



Vladimir Zaluzhsky is Head of The Communications and Investor Relations Department at Severstal, one of Russia’s largest steelmakers. He has worked at Severstal for ten years guiding investor relations and communications at this vertically integrated steelmaker with an increasing emphasis on ESG. Vladimir is consistently rated among the top communications professionals in Russia.



Rebecca Gudgeon is a Partner at Hudson Sandler. With around 30 years’ experience in helping companies build and protect their corporate reputations, her work over the last decade has been almost entirely focused on developing credible and transparent sustainability communications strategies. She has worked with companies and sectors under attack from NGOs and regulators and has instigated programmes that have helped her clients become genuine sector leaders in ESG.


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