The Milford investment team have always looked for the best companies. It is clear to us the best companies are those committed to sustainable practices and are the businesses that, over time, will deliver better operational outcomes, stronger financial performance and ultimately, higher shareholder returns.
If we decide a company is not operating in a sustainable way, we affect positive change by engaging with management and holding boards to account. By using our influence as active managers to improve the sustainability of the business model, we know we are also increasing a company’s potential to achieve long-term financial success.
As a public demonstration of our commitment to responsible investing, Milford became both a signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) and a member of the Responsible Investment Association Australasia (RIAA), in February 2018.
In 2020, Milford was awarded an A rating* by UNPRI and recognised for strong engagement with policymakers and regulators.
We have adopted multiple approaches to integrate consideration of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors into our investment process:
Across all Milford funds, including our KiwiSaver funds, we will not directly invest in companies involved in the following activities:
• Production or sale of anti-personnel land mines that are not compliant with the Anti-Personnel Mines Prohibition Act 1998;
• Production, design, testing, assembly, or refurbishment of nuclear explosive devices
• Production or development of cluster munitions
• Processing of whale meat
• Manufacture of tobacco
• Manufacture of recreational cannabis products
• Companies involved in the manufacture of civilian automatic and semi-automatic firearms, magazines or parts
Click here to view our current Exclusion List.
To the extent it is feasible and commercially prudent, we will avoid indirect investment in companies on the Exclusion List (i.e. through ETFs or other collective investment vehicles). These types of investments are assessed on a case-by-case basis by our portfolio managers and any potential for indirect exposure is carefully considered and factored into investment selection.
To make the right investment decision, there is much we need to know beyond the profit a company will generate this year or next. Our investment team conduct proprietary, detailed research to understand the long-term sustainability of earnings and the risk profile of a security. Evaluating a business’ exposure to climate change and social harm, and how these risks are being managed, is critical to this comprehensive analysis.
As a partial owner of the companies we invest in, we engage with companies regarding sustainability issues.
We are an advocate for strong corporate governance, shareholder rights, and transparency. We endeavour to exercise our proxy voting rights wherever possible and in a manner which reflects an understanding of the environmental, social, and governance impact of our investee companies.
For further information on Milford’s approach to responsible investing, please see our Responsible Investment Policy.
Outside of investing, we are committed to making a positive social impact within the New Zealand community through our diverse sponsorship program. You can view more information about our various community partners on our sponsorship page.
*In 2020, Milford was awarded an A rating on four UNPRI modules including our overall Strategy and Governance and ESG Incorporation.