On behalf of Maj Invest, the Nordic consultancy company Global Engagement Services (GES) continuously monitors and screens all companies included in the listed equity and fixed-income portfolios managed on behalf of clients. This screening is done to observe the standards comprised by widely recognised international conventions and guidelines relating to human rights, labour rights, environmental responsibility and corporate governance, also known as ESG relations (environmental, social, governance).
Maj Invest has been collaborating with GES since 2005. In addition, in August 2010 Maj Invest formally became a signatory to the Principles for Responsible Investment, PRI, supported by the UN. As part of the responsibilities as a signatory to the PRI, Maj Invest makes a report on responsible investment annually. Please read the 2019 Transparency Report here.
GES regularly screens more than 20,000 companies for any violations of widely accepted international conventions and guidelines relating to the environment, human rights and business ethics. On the basis of this screening GES keeps an observation list of potential incidents, and in the case of clearly documented violations of guidelines, GES will warn companies and enter into a dialogue with the respective companies.
In addition, twice a year GES will make an explicit screening of the companies in which Maj Invest has invested on behalf of clients. If these companies come into conflict with international conventions, Maj Invest will via GES seek to enter into a constructive dialogue with the aim to change the company’s conduct together with other institutional investors through the GES Engagement Forum.
Repeated criticism of a company’s lack of responsibility when it comes to violations of international conventions and guidelines without sufficient responsiveness from company management will normally result in Maj Invest selling its stake in the company.
Thus, ESG issues are an integrated part of the general analytical work in relation to Maj Invest’s equity and fixed-income investments as laid down in the PRI, among other things.