Fintech Tumelo has partnered with US non-profit As You Sow, Glass Lewis and Pensions & Investment Research Consultants to pass through voting powers to end investors of pension holders and individual savers.
Through the organisations’ various platforms, such as As You Sow’s voting platform As You Vote, retail and institutional investors will be able vote directly on shares held in pooled funds. They will also have access to research to make better decisions around voting and view fund managers’ intentions to vote on matters ahead of the vote taking place.
The partnership allows investors to also choose voting policies to match their values and have them automatically applied to their votes. Glass Lewis has developed a suite of thematic proxy voting policies including, for example, a Climate Policy for those investors who wish to prioritise the mitigation of climate risk in their investments, and a Governance-Focused Policy that ensures boards of directors are appropriately positioned to devote the time and attention necessary to fulfil their fiduciary duty to shareholders.
Will Goodwin (pictured), co-founder at Tumelo, said: “This partnership allows Tumelo to solve two big problems for our customers. Investors across the network are now provided with the same high-quality advice as fund managers, helping them to make informed decisions. We can also now show investors how their fund managers intend to vote in the fund ahead of it happening, allowing for greater transparency.”
Andrew Behar, CEO of As You Sow, added: “Our ESG-aligned voting platform called As You Vote has, to date, only been available for institutional investors. Tumelo has empowered pension holders and individuals with their savings in mutual funds and ETFs to subscribe to our guidelines and align their proxy voting with their values. Making proxy voting more democratic will enable every person who is saving for their retirement to send a strong signal to company management and their boards that they want to see accurate disclosure of material information, reduction of risk, and the implementation of policies and practices to achieve a just and liveable planet for themselves and their children.”