We believe that our processes, policies and actions should match our values and ethics. Quadrature is environmentally and ethically conscious, and aims to be a positive contributor to society. We also believe that employers should be transparent when it comes to their CSR work, so that we can all hold each other accountable on the role businesses play in society and in their communities. We have shared below what we do and how we think about things not as a way to promote our work, but as a way to be transparent with anyone who would like to know how we approach CSR.
In 2019 we set up the Quadrature Climate Foundation (QCF) to tackle society’s most urgent issue - the climate emergency. You can find more information about QCF here.
QCF is fully-funded by Quadrature Capital Ltd (named Quadrature). The QCF and Quadrature teams share an office space in The Leadenhall Building, London.
We are a carbon neutral business, offsetting the carbon emissions of our business operations, such as travel and data centre power use, at $100 per tonne of CO2. We partner with Climate Care, a company committed to a carbon neutral world where everyone takes responsibility for their footprint. Our portfolio of projects with Climate Care aim to reduce emissions and improve the health and lives of local communities.
The nature of our business, with its complex models and large scale data use, means that we have an increasing demand for greater computing capacity. Whilst we currently offset our data centre use, we believe that there is more we can do. A new data centre in Norway will host two thirds of our capacity. We have chosen this site as it has multiple independent electricity feeds from a nearby hydroelectric plant guaranteeing that the energy we’re consuming is 100% drawn directly from this renewable source. As an added bonus, the waste heat generated from our servers will be used to heat the data centre campus buildings, and will melt the snow in the winter.
Quadrature applies market neutral trading strategies, seeking to profit from both increasing and decreasing prices whilst targeting sector neutrality. In line with our desire to positively contribute to society, and with QCF’s work focused on fighting the climate crisis, we evaluated the pros and cons of removing all stocks that are inconsistent with the Paris Agreement of limiting the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees from our investable universe. We do not hold stocks for long periods of time, instead we trade in and out and are as likely to be short as long. The only impact we have is to make them more efficient by adding liquidity, and the value of this additional liquidity is negligible compared to the donations made to the foundation. We therefore look to trade all stocks irrespective of their underlying business model and so our regulatory reports may show long positions that don’t align with our values.
There is currently around £3 trillion invested in UK pensions, but at present this capital can flow into companies that do environmental and social harm. Making the decision as a business to move to a sustainable pension fund can have a significant impact in reducing the carbon footprint of its employees.
That is why we offer our employees a truly sustainable and ethical pension fund with Aviva’s Stewardship Life Fund. We also encourage our business partners (e.g. Prime Brokers) to review their own company pension schemes and consider selecting, as a default, one which prioritises ESG factors.
We want to build and grow a successful, inclusive business that we can all be proud of. We believe that diversity is a critical part of this. We aim to remove barriers so that people with different experiences and from different backgrounds see us as somewhere they’d love to work.
Diversity creates more varied thinking in teams, where people come together with different backgrounds and experiences, creating an environment of debate, challenge, idea generation and innovation. There is no shortage of evidence to support this, but this is not the reason we want diversity. We want a diverse business because we believe that it’s the right and fairest thing to do from a social and moral perspective.
We are passionately committed to hiring diverse candidates from different backgrounds for work placements, internships and permanent roles. Our leaders feel fully accountable for making a difference in our industry when it comes to how we hire - Finance and Technology continues to be closed off to so many people, and we wish to change that.
Through hiring we specifically look to help candidates who are underrepresented in Finance and Technology. This includes female, Black and other ethnic minority candidates, as well as those from low income households who have grown up with limited educational opportunities available to them. Our diversity work outside of recruitment also extends to supporting students in schools through events, partnerships, work insight days and work experience weeks. All applications are considered on merit.
We also work hard to create a culture and an environment that is respectful, kind and enjoyable - one that everyone can succeed in. We all have biases (many unconscious and deep rooted) that create attitudes and beliefs. These attitudes and beliefs might, even if accidental, reinforce stereotypes that only serve to disconnect people from feeling included. We seek feedback on what it’s like to work at Quadrature, train our managers on how to build healthy, trusting teams, and we plan to provide bias training to all employees through a partnership with Paradigm.
Research is currently underway to ensure we use sustainable suppliers for the food and drinks that we offer our employees when they are in the office. We are also looking to partner with local businesses that can provide locally grown/sourced produce.
For deliveries (e.g. stationery), we aim to purchase only sustainable and ethically sourced products. We are currently reviewing ways that we can use low impact vehicles to deliver products (e.g. cyclist deliveries), and we also try to bundle up our deliveries to minimise the need for multiple drivers. Employees are not permitted to deliver personal items to the office, a Leadenhall Building initiative that helps minimise pollution in central London.
We sort all our waste to recycle as much as possible, and the Leadenhall building helps us with this by keeping records of all company recycling stats. We are also a paperless office, in that we encourage no printing unless necessary.
We are in the process of redesigning our office space, which should be completed Spring-Summer 2021.
We are using the redesign of our office as an opportunity to carefully consider our ongoing and future effect on the environment, our ethical choices, and the kind of space we’d like our people to be in. The design and construction impact on the environment has also been carefully considered. Considerations include:
We are committed to preventing the existence of modern slavery within our supply chain or any part of our business. We have a zero-tolerance approach to slavery and human trafficking in any form and we expect our suppliers and service providers to also meet these standards. You can read more about our approach to preventing modern slavery here.
The amount of tax that Quadrature (as Investment Manager) pays is insignificant compared to the amounts paid by the Funds, but their accounts are not publicly available as the information contained within them is proprietary. Quadrature sees tax as a key mechanism by which companies can contribute to society. Quadrature manages Funds that are located in the Cayman Islands, a zero tax jurisdiction that enables investors in the fund to pay taxes in their home countries without being subject to double taxation. We arranged for both of the Quadrature Funds to be UK resident with HMRC, and therefore pay full corporation tax on their profits.
We support a variety of charities and partners, predominantly focusing on partnerships that address social inequality and poverty. Key partners include Absolute Return for Kids (Ark), The Access Project, Innovations for Poverty Action, St Giles Trust, and Teach First. We are also developing new relationships with partners who work explicitly on issues surrounding racial inequality and discrimination. We will update this policy once these partnerships are confirmed.