In the spotlight

1 minute read

It’s not often that people outside the business world pay attention to a CEO’s letter to shareholders. But BlackRock CEO Larry Fink’s 2020 letter saying that the world’s largest asset manager would put sustainability at the center of its investment approach—and pushing other business leaders to do the same—was still making ripples in the Republican presidential candidate debate in December 2023. BlackRock’s position made it a culture-war target among U.S. Republican candidates, and the backlash cost it business among state pension plans in some GOP-led states. While Fink has since eased off on environmental and social issues, he has the ear of government officials around the world. With its $10.5 trillion in assets under management, BlackRock has a big enough stake in many influential companies to push them to change decisions and priorities. Its January deal to buy Global Infrastructure Partners for $12.5 billion is set to make it the world’s second largest infrastructure firm too.

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