Governance & Stewardship under review
03 March 2014
Standard Life Investments, the global investment manager, has published its 2013 Annual Review of Governance & Stewardship. If 2012 was the year of the Shareholder Spring then 2013 was the year of “responsibilities and regulations”. The emerging longer-term picture described in the report is one of increased shareholder activism.
In 2013, there was increased focus on how asset owners and asset managers fulfilled their investor stewardship responsibilities. Regulators around the world introduced new laws and regulations designed to strengthen corporate governance, especially as it relates to executive pay and audit issues, giving shareholders new rights to hold boards of companies to account. The most striking example was the introduction in the UK of a binding vote on executive pay policy.
Guy Jubb, Global Head of Governance and Stewardship, Standard Life Investments, said:
“Standard Life Investments is determined to play its part in promoting best practice as the global landscape for governance & stewardship changes, and the rights and responsibilities of leading global investors come into sharper focus. In doing so, we firmly believe that it is mutually beneficial for companies and long term-investors to have a relationship based on accountability, engagement and trust.
“Such a relationship enables us to act in the best interests of our clients by allowing us to work with company boards and hold them to account as and when appropriate. We believe that this serves to enhance the long-term value of our clients’ investments and to protect their interests when necessary.”
The Standard Life Investments 2013 Annual Review of Governance & Stewardship includes details of companies where Standard Life Investments has been influential in achieving change, for example RSA Insurance Group and Lazard. It also highlights voting at a number of AGMs including Glencore and Persimmon.