governance in brief

Governance in Brief – Feb 04, 2021

Apollo Global Management to overhaul corporate governance On January 25, US private equity firm Apollo Global Management announced far-reaching changes to its corporate governance. The firm will separate the Chairman and CEO roles held by co-founder Leon Black, who will stay on as Chairman while co-founder Marc Rowan takes over as CEO.

926 Engagement Meetings in Emerging Markets

Lessons Learned from 926 Engagement Meetings in Emerging Markets

When Sustainalytics (GES[1]) initiated the Emerging Markets (EM) Engagement program as a pilot project in 2009, the scale, scope and impact were undetermined factors. Based on the successful execution of the program methodology in the African and Middle Eastern regions during the pilot stage, the full program launched in 2010 to cover all major emerging markets. After the project close in July 2020, the program accounts for 926 meetings with companies in emerging markets.

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The Food Value Chain: ESG Risks and Solutions

This years edition of Sustainalytics’ 10 for series takes a deep dive into some of the most pressing environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues affecting companies that contribute to the global food value chain.

governance in brief

Governance in Brief – Jan 28, 2021

Home Depot and Omnicom Group are both facing shareholder resolutions calling for an independent third-party investigation into the link between their social media advertising and “violations of civil or human rights.”

Coal banner still

A Political Pivot for Climate Change and the American Coal Industry

As the Biden administration moves into the White House this week, the world is waiting to see if a promising focus on climate change along with a Democratic Congress will present plausible opportunities to cut carbon emissions. While the outgoing administration backed initiatives supporting coal energy[1], it doesn’t appear to have slowed industry decline.

governance in brief

Governance in Brief – Jan 14, 2021

Starting this year, Apple will introduce an ESG modifier to its short-term incentive (STI) plan that may increase or decrease executives’ annual bonuses by up to 10%. The performance measures and the threshold, target, and maximum opportunity levels under the STI will remain unchanged.

governance in brief

Governance in Brief – Jan 07, 2021

Following confusion, NYSE delists three Chinese companies The New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) has announced the January 11 delisting of the American depositary receipts (“ADRs”) of three Chinese telecommunications companies. The concerned companies are China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom Hong Kong, all controlled by the Chinese state and also listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

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Is Natural Gas a Cleaner Energy Solution?

While Oil and Gas (O&G) operations are responsible for roughly 15 percent of global energy-related GHG emissions, some energy companies have pledged the role of natural gas (NG) as a transitional fuel. At the same time, NG energy use is increasing globally, and shale-gas extraction is booming at an unprecedented rate. One factor that is often overlooked is the methane emissions across the NG value chain.

Human Rights Accountability Takes Center Stage in 2020

December 10th is Human Rights Day and, as we approach the end of the year, recognition of this day offers a suitable moment to reflect on the extraordinary events that unfolded in 2020.

Combining ESG Risk and Economic Moat

In this report, we look at the potential synergies between Sustainalytics’ ESG Risk Ratings and Morningstar’s Economic Moat Rating. As a part of our research, we constructed a back-testable investment strategy and portfolio by segmenting stocks with low ESG risk and a wide moat. While both metrics worked independently, they performed exceptionally well in combination.

Integrating Climate Risk into Corporate Governance

Since the introduction of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), there has been increased scrutiny of corporate climate governance and broader associated risks. Investors have increased their focus on climate risk, as governance mechanisms are likely to be impacted by transition and physical risk challenges[i].

Two Sides of the Corporate Taxation Debate

There is a growing awareness of how, and how much, corporations pay in taxes. This heightened cognizance has led to on-going public debates regarding the inherently unfair structure of many global corporate tax systems.

How Climate Gentrification is Increasing Real Estate Costs and Socio-economic Disparities

Climate gentrification is an emerging concept describing how land with greater resiliency against intensifying physical impacts of climate change becomes more desirable and valuable.[1] It catalyzes fast and visible socio-economic transformation in communities.

ESG Risk Ratings Methodology

The ESG Risk Ratings measure the degree to which a company’s economic value is at risk driven by ESG factors or, more technically speaking, the magnitude of a company’s unmanaged ESG risks. A company’s ESG Risk Rating is comprised of a quantitative score and a risk category.

Prioritizing Patient Care and Staff Safety in a Pandemic

Medical facilities, including hospitals and long-term care facilities, are under tremendous pressure to provide quality healthcare for patients while ensuring patient and staff safety amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. By using Sustainalytics’ ESG Risk Rating to understand better the risks faced by companies, and the current state of preparedness within the medical facility subindustry, investors can identify the most relevant points to address when engaging with companies and analyzing potential ESG impacts in their portfolios.

Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation: An Industry Game-changer

In recent months, the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) has been sparking almost as much debate as the EU Taxonomy – both cornerstone regulations of the EU Sustainable Finance Action Plan. With the SFDR set to redefine ESG disclosures and make a significant impact on financial market participants in Europe, the short timeline and ambiguity on several vital details are creating confusion and concern in the industry. The risk of organizations not being able to comply in time is still present, despite the announced delay in timelines for the technical standards, as is the risk of high financial and operational costs for the industry.

Corporate ESG ebook

Corporate ESG Ratings: How businesses are leveraging their ESG Risk Ratings

Good environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance is not just about meeting investor demands. From revenue generation and raising capital to talent acquisition and employee retention, strong corporate ESG performance can influence key aspects of a company’s operations.

A Pipeline for Strategic ESG Risk Mitigation

Given the ESG impacts often associated pipeline projects, it is reasonable to say that pipelines have been a source of controversy in North America and around the world. In 2020 alone, several major pipeline projects face high levels of public and community-based opposition; with consequences including widespread protests (as was the case for TC Energy’s Coastal GasLink project at the beginning of this year) and large-scale regulatory and legal challenges (as seen currently with the Dakota Access Pipeline).

If the proxy vote is your voice, what are you saying?

To date, 2020 has marked record inflows to sustainable investments[1]. Elevated globally by a health, social and financial crisis; investors and stakeholders alike are coming to understand the inherent risk of ignoring key environmental, social and governance factors. Current events coupled with new regulations and stakeholder pressure are creating the need for investors to demonstrate their commitment as responsible owners who view corporate accountability as a means to achieving greater long-term value.

ESG Innovators in the ever-changing world of investment solutions

NN Investment Partners (NN IP) is the asset manager of NN Group N.V., a publicly traded corporation, headquartered in The Hague, the Netherlands. NN Investment Partners offers specialized SRI funds and tailor-made responsible investment solutions that meet the growing demand for products that generate good financial returns and at the same time have positive impact on society.