Saturday, May 30, 2015

Oil’s Green Investors Win Trojan Horse Victories in Board Access

(Credit: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg) Click to Enlarge.
Activist investors pushing for more say in how companies deal with climate change won their biggest prize yet when shareholders in the world’s second-largest oil producer agreed to make it easier to capture directorships.

Chevron Corp. investors voted 55 percent in favor of a non-binding resolution that would allow certain holders to nominate a candidate for the board.  The company had opposed the measure, saying the so-called “proxy access” initiative would undermine efforts to thoroughly vet prospective directors.

Investor majorities at 21 other energy companies have embraced proxy access this year. Adding Chevron to that group is an important victory for investors such as New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer, who backed the measure as a means of infiltrating corporate boards with green activists.

“This is a sea change,” said Anne Simpson, senior portfolio manager for the California Public Employee Retirement Fund.  “This is now mainstream and there will be winds of change in the boardroom.  Companies that fail to adopt proxy access will find this proposal on the ballot again next year.”

Read more at Oil’s Green Investors Win Trojan Horse Victories in Board Access

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