At AlbaCore, we focus on the long-term. As one of Europe’s leading alternative credit specialists, we invest in private capital solutions, opportunistic and dislocated credit and structured products. 

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Specialist in Asia Pacific, China, India and South East Asia and Global Emerging Market equities.

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Our philosophy is very simple. We are constantly searching for high quality businesses and when we acquire them, we will work relentlessly with them to create long-term sustainable value through innovation, ESG-led and proactive asset management.

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Leader in active quantitative equities across Australian equities, global equities, emerging markets and global small companies.

Backed by a unique blend of research, portfolio construction and risk management, focused on uncovering original insights and translating them into investment strategies that are active and systematic, aiming to generate alpha.

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Specialists in equity portfolios in Asia Pacific, emerging markets, global and sustainable investment strategies

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Why is it important to us?

Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) are the keys to building fair and equitable organisations, institutions and communities. There are many business benefits that can accrue from including people with different skills, life experiences and outlooks. We also believe that creating diverse organisations is the right thing to do, as it allows a wide range of people to access opportunities and fully participate in the workforce, to the best of their abilities.

What is First Sentier Investors doing?

We believe collaborative engagements can be a force for change in this area, and as such, we continue to be active members of the 40:40 Vision initiative in Australia, which advocates for listed Australian companies to have at least 40% women in senior management, and we support the 30% Club’s aim of seeing all company boards with at least 30% female representation.

We have found that while a growing number of companies in developed markets are meeting this goal, there are still a large percentage of companies that do not. This year we analysed our own portfolio holdings to understand the regional and other differences, to better target our engagement efforts in future.

During 2023, we saw the introduction of Principal Adverse Impact (PAI) reporting under the European Union’s (EU) Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regime (SFDR), which calls for reporting on the gender diversity of boards, as well as unadjusted pay gap, which is a relatively new reporting request in most markets. In response, the Responsible Investment team developed a research paper on the gender diversity PAIs, to help inform investment teams about these metrics.

We are also focused on increasing the diversity of our own workforce, especially in the investment teams, which have, historically, been predominantly male. These efforts focus on both attracting women into the industry, and retaining them once they have joined. Further details of this activity are outlined in our Corporate Sustainability Report.

Investment team progress

Investment teams also made progress on this issue, as outlined below.

Australian Equities Growth

The Australian Equities Growth team continued to ask portfolio companies about their initiatives to improve gender diversity across their workforce. It asks companies about where they perceive the challenges to be and the initiatives they have in place to address those, and encourages companies to carry out equal pay reviews if they have not already done so.

Australian Small and Mid Cap Companies

The Australian Small and Mid Cap Companies team seeks to engage extensively with companies on board composition and diversity. While the team is one of many voices advocating for greater board diversity, the strong relationships the team has built with companies over many years, together with an understanding of the challenges for growing businesses, allows for targeted and meaningful engagement.

Short Term Investments

While the Short Term Investments team does not have the ability to vote on resolutions, it continued to engage with companies on improving gender diversity on boards and management levels where relevant, and to improve diversity more broadly.

Reporting on progress

In 2022, we reported, for the first time, on the gender diversity of boards for our listed equities portfolio, and its variance to an aggregated benchmark3. There has been a marginal increase in that number for 2023, and it remains ahead of the benchmark. It is more difficult to report the equivalent for fixed income, due to the varied nature of issuers and security types. We continue to look for ways to address this gap.

The table below shows the weighted average percentage of females on boards for all listed equities teams across First Sentier Investors, compared to an aggregation of their respective benchmarks, and covering 91.2% of listed equities AUM. As several markets are increasing regulation on this issue, we expect to see an increase in board gender diversity over the next decade.


Figure 3. Gender diversity on boards in First Sentier Investors portfolios

  Weighted average % females on boards - First Sentier Investors portfolio Weighted average % females on boards - aggregated benchmark Variance to aggregated benchmark Coverage (%AUM)
Listed company boards 2023 29.30% 28.50% 0.80% 91.20%
Listed company boards 2022 26.20% 25.00% 1.20% 91.50%


Source: First Sentier Investors, Sustainalytics SFDR PAI Data Set. Data as at 31 December 2023.

3 The aggregated benchmark is a weighted average benchmark, using benchmarks associated with each portfolio and weighted by each portfolio's portion of the total assets under management.

Diversity can be summed up as ‘the things that make us different'.


While gender diversity data is widely available for company boards, it is less straightforward to find easily comparable data on management gender diversity.

There are also many more aspects of diversity than just gender, but reporting on these factors is limited. There are also the sensitivities of asking employees for such data about themselves, so there is more work to be done for investors to understand the landscape as it is today, and what appropriate targets we should set.

Future plans

Gender is not the only relevant marker of diversity. In future, we would like to include factors such as ethnicity, neurodiversity, socio-economic background and disability in our company engagements.

In 2024, there will be more transparency about unadjusted pay gap data, as companies in Australia will need to report publicly, which brings it in line with existing United Kingdom requirements. This will be followed by EU member states in coming years. We will look to use this data as one measure for understanding a company's DEI efforts.

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