Euromoney magazine this week named Bank of America the World’s Best Bank in two key areas: Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Advisory.
Best Bank for CSR: This award goes to the firm that demonstrates excellence in its initiatives, achievements and milestones, and how it has helped clients improve their CSR credentials. Charitable and philanthropic ventures are important, but Euromoney focused its deliberations on those that provide financial or market solutions.
This is the second year that Bank of America has won the CSR accolade, having received Euromoney’s inaugural award in 2015. This success reflects the way in which the firm has integrated environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into its eight lines of business, helping to deliver new business and increase shareholder value.
In speaking about why the firm was awarded the Best Bank for CSR, Euromoney said, “Corporate social responsibility is becoming increasingly integrated within bank businesses, and no bank demonstrates that as fully in every region of the world as Bank of America. Anne Finucane is vice chairman and head of the bank’s global Environmental, Social and Governance Committee, overseeing the $125 billion environmental business initiative, as well as the CDFI portfolio and the bank’s charitable foundation. That level of C-suite engagement and commitment really shows.”
“More and more clients and shareholders see ESG as an important business opportunity, not just the right thing to do,” said Bank of America Vice Chairman Anne Finucane. “For Bank of America, ESG is part of our culture; it’s a mandatory part of the risk management conversation and core to how we approach responsible growth.”
Bank of America has found several ways to put ESG into practice. For example:
- To meet the needs of clients who want ways to invest in companies aligned with their values, the company developed a Bank of America Merrill Lynch ESG-filtered index based on smart beta informed by research and analysis into those specific factors.
- For the past three years, Bank of America Merrill Lynch has been the industry’s leading global underwriter of green bonds, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
- The company’s wealth management business has $11.3 billion in assets under management with a clearly defined ESG approach. Through U.S. Trust, it has developed six investment sleeves within its Socially Innovative Investing Portfolio. And Merrill Lynch offers five sustainable portfolios as part of its platform of impact portfolios that serve clients interested in using their investment capital for social and environmental purposes.
- In every market around the world, the changing nature of work is necessitating skills training for young people transitioning from education to employment. Bank of America recognizes the important role they can play in ensuring people are able to contribute to future workforce demands. Through several programs in EMEA specifically, the company is helping to equip young people with the skills of tomorrow.
Best Bank for Advisory: This award goes to the firm that can demonstrate best-in-class advice to clients across corporates, FIG and SSAs about M&A, restructuring, risk management and regulatory issues.
In speaking about why the firm was awarded the Best Bank for Advisory, Euromoney said, “Bank of America Merrill Lynch is the world’s best advisory firm for 2017 thanks to lead financial advisory roles on both the buy- and sell-sides in many of the largest and most complex cross-border transactions that continue to transform industries in the era of giant M&A.” Euromoney notes the company’s role in advising Bayer on its $66 billion agreed takeover of Monsanto in the U.S., the largest foreign takeover by a German company and the largest all-cash M&A deal in history.
“We have built a world-class advisory franchise that has the best mix of talent and industry knowledge to serve our clients,” noted Christian Meissner, head of Global Corporate and Investment Banking, Bank of America Merrill Lynch. “The large and complex transactions we continue to lead are a testament to our firm’s unparalleled solutions and global platform."
The Euromoney award for Best Bank for Advisory recognizes Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s relentless focus on delivering the capabilities needed to become a trusted adviser of choice to select large-cap corporate clients likely to undertake franchise transactions. The award also acknowledges the firm’s geographic breadth of its advisory business and its ability to lead advise on the most important cross-border transactions across the Americas, Europe and Asia.
In addition to winning the CSR and Advisory global awards, Bank of America also won a number of regional accolades for excellence in retail, commercial, corporate and investment banking:
- Best Bank for Transaction Services in Western Europe
- Best Bank for SMEs in North America
- Best Bank for Financing in North America
- Best Investment Bank in Latin America
- Best Bank for Advisory in Latin America
- Best Bank for Markets in Asia
- Best Bank in the U.S.
- Best Investment Bank in Spain
- Best Investment Bank in Peru