We are focused on delivering superior, long-term sustainable returns for our clients and this goal is at the forefront of all of our voting decisions. We consider proxy voting an integral part of our commitment to clients. Our voting process ensures that each proxy vote is analysed on a case-by-case basis, and has the force of multiple decision-makers bringing the weight of their collective experience to bear on the specific issues.
Our internal Governance and Proxy (GAP) team coordinates and facilitates the proxy voting process. The team comprises analysts, specialists and proxy administration and members are based in London, Los Angeles, San Franciso, Hong Kong and Singapore. The team has considerable experience in voting and other governance issues. GAP analysts and specialists provide our investment analysts with detailed information around votes and our voting guidelines which are incorporated into our voting recommendations. Investment analysts are responsible for developing the voting recommendations. Their experience and in-depth knowledge of each company and their sectors enables them to factor in particular relevant circumstances and any idiosyncratic characteristics into the voting recommendations. This ensures that the voting decisions of our proxy committees are in line with the analyst's overall long-term investment thesis and forms part of our ongoing engagement and interaction with the company. The intimate involvement of the investment group in the voting process enables them to explain and discuss our voting position with company management and the non-executive board; this access broadens our understanding of the business and ensures the voting decisions of our proxy committees are integrated closely with our wider company engagement. Voting recommendations are reviewed by proxy coordinators (senior analysts with experience in corporate governance and proxy voting matters), and then further reviewed and debated by our regional proxy voting committees who make the final vote decision. The proxy voting committee comprise primarily of investment professionals, bringing a wide range of experience and views to bear on each voting decision. Our proxy voting committees, delineated by geographical region, are responsible for overseeing proxy voting, globally.
This four-stage process ensures that each proxy is critically analysed and evaluated on its merits and considered in the context of the analyst’s knowledge of the company, current management, management’s past record, and the proxy committee's general position on the issue.
We review our voting policies annually which continue to evolve and reflect the changing corporate landscape and regional differences.