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Moody’s acquires ESG research and data firm Vigeo Eiris

A monitor displays Moody’s Corp. signage on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

Moody's Investors Service agreed to acquire a majority stake in environmental, social and governance research and data firm Vigeo Eiris, a Moody's spokesman said Monday.

The transaction closed on April 12 and its terms were not disclosed, he said. The spokesman said the deal will not have a "material impact on the firm's financial result."

Paris-based Vigeo Eiris will maintain its headquarters in France, continuing to operate under its existing brand, and it will become an affiliate of Moody's. Vigeo Eiris will work with Moody's to provide investors and issuers with data, research, products and solutions to enhance and develop the incorporation of ESG factors into investors' strategy and operations.

Moody's announced the creation of a new Moody's assessment business following a plan to expand into areas of risk other than credit, the spokesman said. It acquired Vigeo Eiris in its first transaction, but it is planning further expansion into non-credit risk assessment, such as cybersecurity risk, the spokesman added.

Nicole Notat will continue to serve as Vigeo Eiris's president. Sabine Lochmann was named Vigeo Eiris's CEO, a new position; she started in February. "(This transaction) heralds a new era and propels Vigeo Eiris and its teams to new heights in an evolving world where deciphering complex risks is more necessary than ever. I welcome our new majority shareholder and would like to express my sincere appreciation to all those who have faithfully supported our company's growth since it was created," Ms. Notat said in a news release.

Myriam Durand, global head of assessments at Moody's Investors Service, said in the release: "Moody's acquisition of a majority stake in Vigeo Eiris will contribute to the further development of leading ESG risk assessments, enabling the market to benefit from a global standard in assessing ESG considerations as part of their investment decisions."

A Vigeo Eiris spokesman could not provide additional details.