Connecting Investors and Companies on ESG

Thomas Milburn

In case you missed it, the Singapore Exchange (SGX) hosted an event last week on 27th February titled “Connecting Investors and Companies” on the topic of sustainability and ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) reporting. The event was well attended by investors, lenders and listed companies. Here are our top 5 takeaways from the event:

  1. Investors and lenders of all types and sizes are increasingly factoring ESG issues into their decision making
  2. Arisaig Partners, Eastspring Investments and ING shared that they rely on information from various sources to make their investment/lending decisions, including ESG ratings, communication and engagement directly with companies, and their own proprietary inhouse tools
  3. However, the investors and lenders in the room felt that there is a big gap between what companies are currently disclosing on ESG issues and their information needs
  4. Companies such as CDL, DBS, Golden Agri-Resources, Olam, Qian Hu Corporation and Singtel all shared how their businesses are managing ESG. The resounding messages across the board was that adopting sustainable business practices is an opportunity for businesses to:
    • Manage risks
    • Reduce costs
    • Deepen relationships with stakeholders
    • Innovate whilst meeting new social and environmental needs
  5. Leaders from the financial community and from business in Singapore have both a moral responsibility and fiduciary duty to address ESG issues such as climate change, that pose systemic risk to society and long-term returns

This event is timely and important step towards bridging the current gap that exists between investors and companies on ESG issues. Indeed, Corporate Citizenship held our own event in London on 21st February 2018, where we welcomed over 140 investor relations and sustainability professionals to our half-day conference “IR meets CR: Do Investors Care About Sustainability?”

Producing a sustainability report serves to build trust and credibility amongst investors and lenders, and can engage them on how your business is creating and sustaining value through the management of ESG issues. To help companies get up to speed with requirements in Singapore, Corporate Citizenship has put together a short guide for directors in listed companies on the recently refreshed SGX Sustainability Reporting Guide.

If you are interested to find out more about our reporting services and how we can support your company ensure its reporting is impactful and meets the needs of your stakeholders, please get in touch with us.

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