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Specialist in Asia Pacific, Japan, China, India and South East Asia and Global Emerging Market equities.

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Our philosophy is very simple. We are constantly searching for high quality businesses and when we acquire them, we will work relentlessly with them to create long-term sustainable value through innovation, ESG-led and proactive asset management.

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Stewart Investors manage investment portfolios on behalf of our clients over the long term and have held shares in some companies for over 20 years. They launched their first investment strategy in 1988.

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Stewart Investors - Climate Change Statement

Stewart Investors - Climate Change Statement

We launched our first sustainable investment fund in 2005. At that time we were convinced all companies would need to adjust to operating in an increasingly carbon-constrained world, and more companies would need to develop solutions to make economies less carbon intensive. Our conviction has never waned, nor has the urgency of the carbon-reduction challenge.

An imperfect indication of how seriously we take decarbonisation is that the carbon footprint of each of our investment strategies has consistently been at least 80% below its respective benchmark index.* 

We invest only in high-quality companies contributing to a more sustainable future. This leads us to seek out companies with exceptional cultures, run by responsible stewards, and whose products, services and operations help reduce ecological footprints, or advance human development, or both, wherever possible.

Some companies we invest in are delivering, or directly enabling, the emission reductions needed to help meet global 1.5oC warming targets. Obvious examples include renewable energy companies. Less obvious examples include companies operating further up or down the energy supply chain, and companies facilitating energy efficiency, waste reduction and recycling. But even companies supporting other aspects of sustainable development, such as improved health or reduced inequality, need to reduce business-as-usual carbon emissions in their supply chains and operations.

The chart above shows our equity share of scope 1 and 2 emissions for each investee company, aggregated across all of our strategies for each of the past 5 years. The benchmark comparisons use the same approach by assuming benchmarks hold the same total value of investments as the comparative strategy.

*Source: Carbon metrics stated are sourced from Stewart Investors and MSCI as at 31 December 2021.

We engage constructively as owners to encourage companies to do more and move faster to achieve sustainable development outcomes, including transitioning to a lower-carbon world. Our investment approach is bottom-up. We spend time understanding each company and its place in the economy from the ground up. We pick apart the fundamental attributes of each business. We do our best to understand the attitudes of the people who steward each company. 

We also seek to understand how rising to the challenge of a carbon-constrained future might influence the quality of a company, and how each company can help the world achieve its carbon-reduction targets.

A risk with distant targets is that we never arrive at our destination. Our Climate Report sets out a clear baseline and targets for 2025 and 2030. We also aim to invest in companies achieving positive social outcomes and contributing to far-reaching sustainable development challenges such as poverty alleviation, inequality and biodiversity loss. Our carbon targets do not diminish our focus on these other areas, if anything we see them as being deeply and intrinsically connected.

We will continue to critically assess the merits of our investment approach and the goals we set ourselves for helping achieve a lower-carbon, sustainable economy.

Our commitment

We will:

1

Allocate capital to high quality companies developing and implementing solutions to alleviate climate change and biodiversity loss, while not investing in fossil fuel companies1.

2

Provide full transparency of our investments, and map these on our Portfolio Explorer tool to frameworks such as Project Drawdown2 climate change solutions to both illustrate how companies are contributing to emission reductions and to help inform and focus our engagement efforts.

3

Encourage companies to take positive actions and use their influence across their value chains to drive emission reductions, while also striving to ensure equitable treatment of all their stakeholders in the transition to a carbon-constrained economy3.

4

Reduce emissions in our own operations and offset whatever emissions we cannot remove.

A Climate Statement Q&A is also available below alongside this statement and our Climate Report contains further detail on our thinking, reporting and commitments.

Climate change statement Q&A

What are your governance and oversight arrangements for climate change, including for remuneration?

Are you committing to net-zero emissions by 2050 and signing the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative?

How does your net-zero target relate to other sustainability issues?

Do you have an action plan?

What do you mean by commissioning and sharing research?

Are you involved with recognised industry climate change initiatives?

Will you invest in fossil fuel companies which are transitioning?

Do you support and comply with the Task Force for Climate Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD)?

Is your engagement and voting strategy aligned with your climate change commitment?

Will you be using carbon offsets?

What are the key climate-related risks in the team's portfolios?

How do you identify these risks?

How do you manage these risks?

Investing in quality companies

Engagement

What targets and objectives have you set?


Investment teams

View our list of investment terms to help you understand the terminology within this document.
 

Footnotes

  1. Consistent with our position statement on harmful and controversial products and services.
  2. https://drawdown.org/
  3. This includes voting for company and shareholder proposals that in our judgement are likely to promote sustainable development and responsible business practices.
  4. The Net Zero Asset Managers initiative is an international group of asset managers committed to supporting net-zero goals. https://www.netzeroassetmanagers.org/
  5. A carbon sink is anything that absorbs more carbon from the atmosphere than it releases – for example, plants, the ocean and soil.
  6. Source: Stewart Investors investment team and MSCI.
  7. Carbon accounting quantifies and measures carbon emissions from physical amounts of greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere and/or financially by giving carbon a financial market value.
  8. TCFD is a market-driven initiative, set up to develop a set of recommendations for voluntary and consistent climate related financial risk disclosures in mainstream filings.
  9. Carbon offsets allow individuals or companies to invest in carbon reducing environmental projects in order to balance out their own carbon footprint.
  10. https://www.offsetguide.org/understanding-carbon-offsets/carbon-offset-programs/

Important information

This material is for general information purposes only. It does not constitute investment or financial advice and does not take into account any specific investment objectives, financial situation or needs. This is not an offer to provide asset management services, is not a recommendation or an offer or solicitation to buy, hold or sell any security or to execute any agreement for portfolio management or investment advisory services and this material has not been prepared in connection with any such offer. Before making any investment decision you should consider, with the assistance of a financial advisor, your individual investment needs, objectives and financial situation.

We have taken reasonable care to ensure that this material is accurate, current, and complete and fit for its intended purpose and audience as at the date of publication. No assurance is given or liability accepted regarding the accuracy, validity or completeness of this material and we do not undertake to update it in future if circumstances change.

To the extent this material contains any expression of opinion or forward-looking statements, such opinions and statements are based on assumptions, matters and sources believed to be true and reliable at the time of publication only. This material reflects the views of the individual writers only. Those views may change, may not prove to be valid and may not reflect the views of everyone at First Sentier Investors.

About First Sentier Investors

References to ‘we’, ‘us’ or ‘our’ are references to First Sentier Investors, a global asset management business which is ultimately owned by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG). Our investment teams operate under the trading name of Stewart Investors which is part of the First Sentier Investors group.

We communicate and conduct business through different legal entities in different locations. This material is communicated in:

  • Australia and New Zealand by First Sentier Investors (Australia) IM Limited, authorised and regulated in Australia by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (AFSL 289017; ABN 89 114 194311)
  • European Economic Area by First Sentier Investors (Ireland) Limited, authorised and regulated in Ireland by the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI ref no. C182306; Registered office: 70 Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, Dublin 2, Ireland; Company no. 629188).
  • Hong Kong by First Sentier Investors (Hong Kong) Limited and has not been reviewed by the Securities & Futures Commission in Hong Kong. First Sentier Investors and Stewart Investors are business names of First Sentier Investors (Hong Kong) Limited.
  • Singapore by First Sentier Investors (Singapore) (Company no. 196900420D) and has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. First Sentier Investors (registration number 53236800B) and Stewart Investors (registration number 53310114W) are business divisions of First Sentier Investors (Singapore).
  • Japan by First Sentier Investors (Japan) Limited, authorised and regulated by the Financial Service Agency (Director of Kanto Local Finance Bureau (Registered Financial Institutions) No.2611).
  • United Kingdom by First Sentier Investors (UK) Funds Limited, authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA ref no. 143359;  Registered office: Finsbury Circus House, 15 Finsbury Circus, London EC2M 7EB; Company no. 2294743).
  • United States by First Sentier Investors (US) LLC, authorised and regulated by the Securities Exchange Commission (RIA 801-93167).
  • In other jurisdictionswhere this document may lawfully be issued, by First Sentier Investors International IM Limited, authorised and regulated in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA ref no. 122512; Registered office: 23 St. Andrew Square, Edinburgh, EH2 1BB; Company no. SC079063).

To the extent permitted by law, MUFG and its subsidiaries are not liable for any loss or damage as a result of reliance on any statement or information contained in this document. Neither MUFG nor any of its subsidiaries guarantee the performance of any investment products referred to in this document or the repayment of capital. Any investments referred to are not deposits or other liabilities of MUFG or its subsidiaries, and are subject to investment risk, including loss of income and capital invested.