Responsible Investment 2021
Our stewardship activity is part of our commitment to securing sustainable returns for our investors. We seek an open and constructive dialogue with investee companies, which can inform their strategic development and our own investment insights.
Active ownership is central to our philosophy, beliefs and processes. Through voting and engagement, we aim to protect and ultimately enhance value in the companies and other issuers in which we invest, and increase the climate-resilience of our clients’ investments.
In 2020, we supported 1,633 shareholder resolutions, 67 per cent of the 2,434 resolutions on which we could vote. On climate change, we typically support resolutions asking for the adoption of climate change policies, two-degree transition plans and/or quantitative greenhouse gas emission reduction targets, and resolutions asking for annual assessments of portfolio resilience.
ESG issues were raised in engagements with over 2,300 companies and other issuers in 78 markets during 2020. ESG issues arose in equity team meetings with 977 companies, 59 per cent of all equity meetings with companies. For our fixed income teams, ESG issues arose at 998 issuer meetings, 87 per cent of all their engagements.
Our Stewardship Approach
Our stewardship approach, overseen by our team of ESG specialists, consists of four key stages:
1. Analysis and research- Perform issuer and sector-specific fundamental ESG analysis
- Identify possible areas of concern
- Undertake stakeholder due diligence
2. Company engagement- Meet with companies to understand issues
- Raise concerns and encourage action
- Seek commitments from companies to address concerns
- Follow up meetings with board members
- Monitor issues and company progress
3. Voting- Communicate voting intentions
- Vote against management where necessary
- Support shareholder resolutions
- Attend selected annual general meetings (AGMs)
4. Further escalation- Engage and collaborate with other investors
- Communicate publicly
- File shareholder resolutions