EdenTree publishes 6th responsible investment report

15 May 2024

EdenTree has published its 6th annual Responsible Investment Activity Report covering its activity in 2023 and focussing on important areas of sustainable investing, such as the new SDR labels, screening of investments, engaging with investee companies, climate change, human rights, nature and the physical world, governance and proxy voting.

In an interview where she looks ahead at what 2024 might bring, Carlota Esguevillas, head of Responsible Investment says: “We cannot stand still – successful ESG integration and engagement is a process that needs continual review and updating.

With this in mind, we are continually evolving the tools and systems to support our investment team and ensure close collaboration with RI specialists. For example, we recently took action to further embed our proprietary research database across the firm, giving investment teams access to ESG research and engagement data in a truly integrated way.”

Looking ahead to the rest of 2024, Esguevillas continues: “We have enhanced the way in which we categorise and track our engagement activity, with a greater focus on outcomes. We have also, at a firm level, chosen to focus our engagement on three core themes:
• A Just Climate Transition
• Water Stress
• Social & Financial Inclusion.
Effective engagement is time intensive, and focusing on these three issues will allow us to concentrate our resources more effectively – and, ultimately, drive greater change.

“Our engagement policy is generic to all clients, strategies and mandates and is based on priorities set each year
and then executed. Engagement expectations (high-level) are set as part of each thematic strand of engagement.

“We do not believe all engagement has a linear outcome, although we track responses, progress of the engagement and any follow-up. Engagement is reported in detail in our quarterly RI Activity Reports and in this Annual Review. The engagement policy is published at www.edentreeim.com which sets out how we conduct, escalate and integrate engagement into investment strategy.

“Our quarterly corporate governance voting reports serve as our disclosure under SRD II in terms of how votes are cast, significant votes and outcomes. We state as a matter of course every quarter the proxy advisers we use, and their function in executing ballot stewardship. We detail all votes where we have opposed and abstained which we declare to be ‘significant votes’ under SRD II. Meetings where all resolutions are supported are also listed (by meeting); we view these as ‘insignificant votes’ for the purposes of SRD II.

“We are signatories to the UK Stewardship Code which dovetails in its intentions on how we exercise stewardship as asset managers on behalf of all clients equally. Our disclosure under the UK Stewardship Code (2019) provisions is published each September and forms part of our reporting suite that includes this RI Annual Review and our Climate Stewardship Report.

“We look forward to continuing to invest in sustainable companies that make a positive impact on the world’s environmental and social challenges, and that can generate good investment returns in doing so.”

Professional Paraplanner