What does this mean for AkzoNobel?
Being included in the AEX ESG index is great recognition of the progress we’ve made and the industry-leading position we have in the field of ESG (environmental, social and governance). It acknowledges the fact that we’re the first paints and coatings company to commit to a carbon reduction target of 50% by 2030 (2018 baseline) for the full value chain, verified by the Science Based Targets initiative.
What’s the value of being included?
Inclusion in ESG funds and meeting investor ESG requirements allows access to greater pool of investors. More importantly, it better aligns the company with shareholders that share the same ESG values.
More and more countries are introducing an ESG index, is this an important trend?
ESG is definitely gaining greater importance among investors, policymakers and other key stakeholders. So the number of ESG funds and investors is growing rapidly. ESG factors are increasingly being applied and integrated into the investment process. They’re regarded as a way to safeguard businesses from future risks.
How has AkzoNobel’s sustainability performance contributed to this?
It’s a direct result of our pioneering drive towards zero waste and reduced carbon emissions. Our inclusion was based on our best-ever assessment from Sustainalytics. Our latest score (announced in December 2021), shows an improvement of two percentage points on the previous year and puts us firmly in the “low risk” category. Among our highlighted strengths were our robust emissions, effluent and waste management program; our carbon program; management of the environmental and social impact of products and services; and corporate governance. We also received high scores for our diversity and inclusion programs, human rights policies, business ethics and our approach to occupational health.
How much interest does AkzoNobel attract from ESG investors?
Around 42% of the company’s share capital was held by ESG investors* at year-end 2021, compared with 41% in 2020.
*As calculated by Nasdaq, according to their methodology, which is to include the sum of:
- Core sustainable and responsible investor firms where 100% of equity assets are managed with an environmental, social and governance (ESG) approach
- Sustainable and responsible investor themed funds managed by a broad range of sustainable and responsible investors