Page 14 - Greenbank Review SP 2019
P. 14

Greenbank Review Spring 2019
Annual engagement review
Taking an active approach to our ownership of companies has been part of the Rathbone Greenbank service from the outset. It’s a vital expression of our role as stewards of our clients’ assets
to advocate for lasting change at the companies in which we invest.
Kate Elliot, Senior Ethical Researcher, Rathbone Greenbank Investments
We track each interaction with a company or policymaker to monitor the effectiveness of our engagement activities. In 2018, we engaged with over 40 companies and managed funds, and addressed over 30 different issues, including climate change, access to medicine, digital rights and nutrition. Engagement focused on social themes received most of our attention, largely due to the start of a major new project in conjunction with the Workforce Disclosure Initiative. This involved engagement with 30 companies on their transparency with regard to the quality of jobs
in their operations and supply chains.
Many of our engagement activities are long-term, multi- year projects; however, we still consider it important
to report annually on our work. In terms of engagement themes, we record the primary focus and seek to maintain a balance between social, environmental and governance- focused engagement projects. While financial reporting
of climate risk might include aspects of governance, we record engagement on this issue under the theme of environment.
Responsible investors can engage with companies in
a variety of ways — individually, collectively or as part
of a formal collaborative arrangement — and Rathbone Greenbank regularly undertakes joint engagement projects. Collaborations can take many forms, but a
major benefit of our membership of the UN-backed Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) is our access to its collaboration platform. Through this, we contributed to eight PRI initiatives in 2018, ranging from responsible tax and cyber-security risk to deforestation and the climate impact of methane leakage.
Major outcomes in 2018
Royal Dutch Shell —
clarity on climate targets
Our long-running dialogue
with Shell helped to secure
a public ambition to reduce
its net carbon footprint (including emissions associated with the production, processing and consumption of the energy products it sells), and a firm commitment to link these targets to executive pay.
Tax — new benchmark
for disclosures on tax
The B Team Responsible
Tax Principles were launched at the World Bank's Platform for Collaboration on Tax event in New York: we were involved in roundtable discussions
to help shape these principles.
Modern Slavery Act — evidence of change
at FTSE 100 companies
We worked with the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre to benchmark supply chain reporting by FTSE
100 companies. Immediate improvements were observed following dialogue with several companies identified as having weaker disclosure.
Fixed-odds betting terminals regulation — government backs limiting stakes
We were one of a small
number of investment managers to engage directly on this issue and were pleased to see the government back our call for a drastic reduction in maximum stakes on fixed- odds betting terminals.
                                      Our engagement work in 2018 supported the following UN Sustainable Development Goals

   12   13   14   15   16