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Stewardship Matters - Introducing active ownership

Active ownership is central to our approach - as long-term investors, engagement and voting can make a meaningful difference.

Date published
21 Mar 2023
David Sheasby Head of Stewardship, Sustainability and Impact
John Gilmore, CFA Portfolio Manager, Impact Equities/ Stewardship, Sustainability and Impact Specialist
Eoghan McGrath Investment Analyst, Stewardship, Sustainability and Impact

Achieving Positive Change

"In our experience, there is a clear appetite for engagement and learning by many companies, that value informed and thoughtful shareowners."
David Sheasby, Head of Stewardship, Sustainability, and impact

Active ownership is central to our approach - as long-term investors, engagement and voting can make a meaningful difference.

This allows us to improve our understanding of the opportunities, demands and challenges companies face. Importantly it allows us to promote and influence best practice and to actively push for change on material sustainability issues.

A systematic approach -  focused on materiality and outcomes

To promote best practice we have developed a systematic approach to engagement that focuses on both materiality and the outcomes at the companies we invest in.  This approach is shown below.

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We believe our engagement efforts lead to more informed decision making, improved relationships with companies, and it helps ensure those companies operate with better governance and sustainability practices.

  • By systematically tracking our engagements, we can provide greater transparency to our investors and have more successful conversations with companies.

We continue to build on our work in this area and have observed:

  • An increasing focus on engagement for change
  • More frequent engagement on environmental and social issues

Although we have been successful in supporting change in a number of engagements, we keep asking, ‘How can we increase the success rate of the engagements we undertake?’

While it is easier to track engagement success purely on outcomes, this approach may be short-sighted. We do not interact with our investee companies in a vacuum, but as part of a complex system, with numerous interactions, dependencies and competing demands.
Knowing where the dependencies, barriers to progress and opportunities are can help us to prioritise our engagements. In turn, this improves efficiency for both us and our investee companies.

By challenging ourselves, and seeking greater efficiency we can help fulfil our clients’ ambitions by supporting the sustainability of the companies we invest in, thereby contributing to a more sustainable economy, society and environment.

Regulatory information and risk warnings

This information is issued and approved by Martin Currie Investment Management Limited (‘MCIM’), authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. It does not constitute investment advice. Market and currency movements may cause the capital value of shares, and the income from them, to fall as well as rise and you may get back less than you invested.

The information contained in this document has been compiled with considerable care to ensure its accuracy. However, no representation or warranty, express or implied, is made to its accuracy or completeness. Martin Currie has procured any research or analysis contained in this document for its own use. It is provided to you only incidentally and any opinions expressed are subject to change without notice.

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Past performance is not a guide to future returns.

The views expressed are opinions of the portfolio managers as of the date of this document and are subject to change based on market and other conditions and may differ from other portfolio managers or of the firm as a whole. These opinions are not intended to be a forecast of future events, research, a guarantee of future results or investment advice.

This data has been provided as an illustration only, the figures should not be relied upon as an indication of future performance. The data provided for this account may be different to other accounts following the same strategy. The information should not be considered as comprehensive and additional information and disclosure should be sought.

The analysis of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors forms an important part of the investment process and helps inform investment decisions. The strategy/ies do not necessarily target particular sustainability outcomes.

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