Asset management, investment processing, and investment operation solutions provider SEI announced today the launch of a global investment stewardship strategy, embedding sustainability into the firm’s shareholder engagement and proxy voting practices. SEI also announced that it is joining climate-focused investor initiative Climate Action 100+.
As part of the new stewardship strategy, SEI will participate in collaborative investor initiatives, focusing engagement activity on global norms and standards, as well as sustainability themes shaping the future of the global economy. According to the company, sustainability-focused thematic engagement programs will proactively engage companies on a range of sustainability risks and opportunities related to climate change and progress toward the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The company will partner with ESG research and ratings company Sustainalytics, which also provides a suite of active ownership offerings, including investor engagement services as well as an ESG voting policy overlay service.
Kevin Barr, Head of SEI’s Investment Management Unit, said:
“We recognize that our voice as shareholders is meaningful to the companies in which we invest. We take our role as investment stewards seriously and seek to use our voice—through engagement and proxy voting—to support long-term management of environmental, social and governance risks and opportunities across our investments. We will integrate insights learned from engagement into proxy voting across our global asset base. With a significant increase in assets in the stewardship program, we look forward to increasing our voice in the market and supporting our longstanding commitment to voting in our clients’ best interests.”
Climate Action 100+ is an investor initiative, with over 545 investors representing more than $52 trillion in assets, that targets the world’s largest corporate greenhouse gas emitters to promote taking necessary action on climate change, and align their business strategies with net zero in order to help limit average global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Signatories to the initiative engage with companies to ensure they implement a strong governance framework that takes into account climate risks and opportunities, reduce emissions across the value chain, and increase climate-related financial disclosures.
Jana Holt, Global Director of Sustainable Investing Solutions in SEI’s Investment Management Unit, said:
“Climate change presents systemic risks to the global economy, while many companies and sectors that proactively address this megatrend may benefit from the transition to a low-carbon economy. By becoming a signatory to Climate Action 100+, we join more than 500 institutional investors globally in an effort to work with companies to improve governance of climate risks and opportunities, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and strengthen climate-related financial disclosures.”