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Ninety One

PRI reporting framework 2020

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Promoting responsible investment

SG 09. Collaborative organisations / initiatives

09.1. Select the collaborative organisation and/or initiatives of which your organisation is a member or in which it participated during the reporting year, and the role you played.

Select all that apply

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are an active signatory and participate in work stream, collaborative efforts and present at events hosted by the UNPRI.

Over the year we attended the PRI in Person event and have taken part in various collaborative engagement opportunities. 

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are an active participant in the organisation including attending the annual conference, participating in collaborative engagements, consultations, delegations and regular conference calls. 

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are an active signatory involved in engagement with companies regarding their disclosure to the project.

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are an active signatory involved in engagement with companies regarding their disclosure to the project.

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are an active signatory involved in engagement with companies regarding their disclosure to the project.

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are involved in collaborative engagement efforts with companies to ensure that they are minimising and disclosing the risks presented by climate change. We have led on numerous engagements.

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We were members of the committee that helped to draft the update to the King Code in South Africa and are a member of a working group to revise the code. 

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are a member of the International Governance Committee where we provide our views of governance best practice.

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We are an active participant in the organisation which includes participating in engagements (i.e. CA100+ engagement) and providing information for thought papers.

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting period (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

Our head of engagement, David Couldridge serves on the ICGN Board, which includes influencing the development of global governance and stewardship policy. We are also a member of the ICGN Articles and Bylaws committee. We have attended various conferences/forums over the year.

          Association for Savings and Investment (ASISA) Responsible Investment Committee, IoDSA Remuneration Forum.
        

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting year (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We actively participate in collaborative engagements and work groups.

          The Investor Association
        

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting year (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We regularly meet with the forum and get involved in relevant engagement cases.

We are full members and take part in various working groups.

Kim McFarland, Ninety One’s Finance Director, serves on the Board.

Tom Nelson, Head of Natural Resources sits on the Sustainability and Responsible Investment Committee, 

          Transition Pathway Initiative
        

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting year (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We pledge support to the initiative and use the data to support our ongoing efforts to better understand climate change risks and opportunities.

          FAIRR
        

Your organisation’s role in the initiative during the reporting year (see definitions)

Provide a brief commentary on the level of your organisation’s involvement in the initiative. [Optional]

We actively participate in collaborative conversations to identify and engage on material ESG risks and opportunities in global protein supply chains.


SG 09.2. Assets managed by PRI signatories

Indicate approximately what percentage (+/- 5%) of your externally managed assets under management are managed by PRI signatories.

100 %

SG 10. Promoting RI independently

10.1. Indicate if your organisation promotes responsible investment, independently of collaborative initiatives.

10.2. Indicate the actions your organisation has taken to promote responsible investment independently of collaborative initiatives. Provide a description of your role in contributing to the objectives of the selected action and the typical frequency of your participation/contribution.

Description

          We are invited to present and train clients on a number of occasions throughout the year. This tend to happen in conjunction with other financial training for trustees.
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          As part of our engagement strategy we have engaged with companies to encourage them to address climate change by measuring, managing and reducing their carbon footprint. We have also supported initiatives that look to improve disclosure and the quality of carbon data. We also respond to consultations to various ESG related policy areas across the world.
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          Members of our ESG team attend various events and conferences through the year. Members have sat on a number of panels to promote responsible investment. We hosted our inaugural Sustainability Workshop in 2019, which included panel discussions and covered a broad range of topics.
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          WWF and Ninety One joined forces to assess the potential uses of geo-spatial research — both to measure environmental risk in sovereign debt portfolios, and to facilitate engagement with governments to encourage fiscal agendas that serve people and the planet.  
In addition, we have wrote various articles that were published including: 
•	Investors focus on sustainability will intensify in 2020 (Investment views)
•	Energy 3.0
•	Quarterly ESG newsletter
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          Throughout our engagements strategy, where relevant, we encourage the companies in which we investment to adopt the PRI.
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          We have responded to a number of surveys over the year including: 
•	GIIN annual impact investor survey
•	Investment Association stewardship survey
•	ICGN Stewardship survey
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          We have written various pieces over the year for the media in response to various events.
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          We are involved in collaborative engagement opportunities.
        

Frequency of contribution

Description

          David Couldridge, Head of Engagement, sits on the Board of the International Corporate Governance Network (ICGN).
Kim McFarland, Finance Director, serves on the Board of the Investment Association (IA).
        

Frequency of contribution

10.3. Describe any additional actions and initiatives that your organisation has taken part in during the reporting year to promote responsible investment [Optional]

Over 2019 members of our ESG team attended a variety of events and conferences that look to promote responsible investment, including:

  • February (Netherlands) – ICGN
  • March (UK) – Engagement & Public Funds Forum
  • June (US) – Governance week
  • September (France) – PRI in Person
  • September (US) – CII conference

At Ninety One we believe in contributing to a better, sustainable future as stewards of long-term capital. We believe our journey from an emerging market start-up to a successful global firm provides us with a unique perspective when serving our clients. As a firm, we strive to contribute meaningfully to the development of frameworks for investment and ownership in the jurisdictions in which we invest. Where appropriate, we seek to influence policy, regulation and laws, aiming to facilitate efficient capital markets and favourable environments for shareholder rights and interests.

Ninety One is often involved in activities that promote ESG and responsible investment, such as:

  • Participating in consultations and collective efforts to improve governance and stewardship practices
  • Speaking at events and conferences and on panels to promote responsible investment
  • Encouraging better transparency and disclosure of responsible investment practices across the investment industry
  • Publishing articles, research papers and thought papers on responsible investment
  • Encouraging others to adopt global principles, codes and standards such as the PRI
  • Providing education or training events for clients

SG 11. Dialogue with public policy makers or standard setters

11.1. Indicate if your organisation - individually or in collaboration with others - conducted dialogue with public policy makers or regulators in support of responsible investment in the reporting year.

If yes

11.2. Select the methods you have used.

11.3. Where you have made written submissions (individually or collaboratively) to governments and regulatory authorities, indicate if these are publicly available.

11.4. Provide a brief description of the main topics your organisation has engaged with public policy-makers or regulators on.

Examples include:

Engagement with Japan Ministry of Finance (MOF) 

In 2019, Japan proposed an amendment to their Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Act (FEFTA) that requires prior-notification by foreign investors intending to acquire 1% or more of shares in listed companies in sectors such as aircraft, electricity/gas, communications (and many more). This is down from the current 10% or more requirement. It also requires prior – notification by foreign investors intending to influence management on governance or business strategy. We were concerned that the amendment could:

  • Impact foreign investment into Japan
  • Increase complexity and administrative costs of investing in Japan.
  • Valuations and market liquidity could be negatively affected.
  • The countries improving corporate governance could slow if pre-notification is required for influencing management on governance or strategy.

Ninety One took the following action:

We wrote to the Ministry of Finance (MOF) listing our concerns and requesting a careful review of the proposed amendments prior to implementation, 
Shared our letter and concerns with the Asian Corporate Governance Network (ACGN) and encouraged action.
Shared our letter and concerns with the International Corporate Governance Network (ICGN) and encouraged action.

COP25 – we co-signed a letter to governments on climate change

As a member of the Institutional Investor Group on Climate Change (IIGCC) we co-signed a letter to governments (along with 630 other investors) to encourage stronger and faster action on achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement.

Emerging Market Sovereign Debt

Our Emerging Market Sovereign Debt directly discuss difficult issues with government- and central bank officials. During these discussions, our portfolio managers will voice their concerns or opinions directly to people who have the capacity to make meaningful changes, particularly in relation to controversial weapons or governance issues and unsustainable environmental practices. This is an extremely fortunate position to have and we do not take it lightly.


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