Ninety One has a global ESG team, which is responsible for managing and guiding stewardship and responsible investment. The team consists of seven individuals with diverse backgrounds, skills and experience. Team members share a passion for sustainable development and a commitment to investing for a better tomorrow.
The team is led by Therese Niklasson, Global Head of ESG, and she is supported by a team of ESG specialists with a broad range of knowledge across ESG-related topics. All team members contribute to ESG research, advocacy, proxy voting and engagement, however each member also has a focus area or specialism.
The ESG team is core to our investment platform. It works closely with each of our investment teams to support the integration of ESG, promote active ownership, and facilitate research and learning. We place great emphasis on physically locating the ESG team within the investment teams, which encourages open discussion and the sharing of ideas and insights. Members of investment teams with a particular passion for ESG are informally appointed ‘ESG champions’; they help to share knowledge and embed ESG within investment process.
The ESG team reports into the Investment Governance Committee (IGC) on a quarterly basis, which is responsible for reviewing activities related to the philosophy, approach and execution of stewardship. The IGC has a transparent governance structure and comprises Ninety One’s Co-Chief Executive Officers, Co-Chief Investment Officers, General Counsel, senior members of the investment teams and senior members of the ESG team, including Therese Niklasson.
Therese also leads the Sustainability Forum at Ninety One alongside Tom Nelson, Head of Natural Resources. This forum is attended by members of the investment teams and hosts discussions on topics that affect investments, firms, industries and the wider world.
In addition the key teams and committees within the business meet on a regular basis to govern stewardship. The ESG team takes part in a number of formal and informal meetings (note the frequency may vary) to help execute their responsibilities, which include:
- ESG team weekly meeting
- Weekly proxy voting meeting
- Weekly private markets meeting
- Quarterly Investment Governance meeting
- Bi-annual ESG strategy meeting
- Annual ESG offsite
- Investment team meetings where relevant
- Annual investment team offsites where relevant
- Quarterly Sustainability Forum meetings
Our commitment to specific initiatives also prompts us to monitor stewardship at Ninety One and report as appropriate.