Aviva is committed to responsible investment, using our influence to support more sustainable businesses and ultimately a more sustainable economy and society. Our investments support the transition to a low carbon economy and we are proud to use our influence to encourage businesses to create legacy by taking a longer-term view on the issues that matter. Find out more about responsible investment at Aviva.
Sustainable business practices
Aviva Investors uses its influence as the global asset management company of Aviva, with £345 billion (as of 31st December 2016) under management in equities, fixed interest, property and multi assets to promote sustainable business practices across the financial markets. Our history of active stewardship of our clients’ funds stretches back to 1990 and, in 2014, we were one of the first large global fund managers to integrate environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues into our investment decision-making across all asset classes. We seek to deliver the specific and meaningful outcomes that matter most to today’s investor. Our commitment to responsible investment is fundamental to delivering this goal that not only benefits our clients, but also the environment and economy as a whole.
We actively promote good practice among those companies in which we invest. The aim of our engagement is to identify and reduce ESG risks in our portfolios. For example, by improving our understanding of the quality of the board of directors of a company and its strategy in responding to issues, such as climate change or the living wage, we can gauge how well prepared companies are to deal with current or emerging ESG issues. Where we consider the company’s response or performance falls short of the required standards, and that this shortfall will have an impact on our investment decision, we will engage with the board to improve performance. We vote against companies’ annual report and accounts that fail to report on key ESG matters or perform poorly. Aviva Investors is a founding signatory to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment and received a ranking of A+ in their 2016 assessment.
Advocating for sustainability
We advocate policy measures that support longer term, more sustainable capital markets. We aim to correct market failures such as a lack of corporate disclosure on ESG risks and climate change – at a national, EU, OECD and UN level – to improve long-term policy outcomes. Finance plays an important role in the Paris Climate Change Agreement and we remain engaged in how finance can be unlocked to facilitate the transition to a lower carbon economy and how we can directly finance assets that help reach this goal. Our focus from an investment perspective is on integrating and engaging on climate risk to manage our exposure and to ensure the companies in which we invest are working towards climate-resilient business strategies.
Aviva Investors launched a collaborative investor engagement project to engage with extractive mining companies, and call for ‘no-go’ commitments on world heritage sites.
Aviva Investors has targeted 40 large, food producing and retailing companies with high exposure to antibiotic risk in an effort to encourage better practices and improved businesses.