We take into account environment, social and governance (ESG) issues, including issues related to climate change, as an integral part of our investment policy.
As a patient capital investor, we are committed to the long haul. To protect the value of our portfolios over the long term, we take into account environmental, social and governance criteria (climate change, resource depletion, job creation, social instability, fraud, etc.) at every stage of our investment process and for all asset classes held.
We aim to contribute through our investments to the balanced and sustainable development of the economy and society. As such, we endeavour to make the ecology and energy transition an essential component of our approach to portfolio management.
- The Caisse des Dépôts group, a committed investor encouraging a resilient and low-carbon economy
ACTING AS A RESPONSIBLE INVESTOR
Our investment policies are approved by Caisse des Dépôts’s Supervisory Board and comply with the principles and policies set out in publicly available documents, including our Responsible Investment Charter and its themed appendices.
- Caisse des Dépôts Responsible Investment Charter - April 2014
- General principles on the governance of quoted companies
- Group Charter: relationships between the public institution and its subsidiaries
- Exclusion principles
- Caisse des Dépôts Group Climate Finance Policy
Our responsible investment approach is underpinned by three pillars:
We strive to systematically analyse and factor in all environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria likely to affect investment performance.
We monitor the ESG performance of the companies in which we invest and support them to encourage their progress. To this end, we rely on two mechanisms: voting and shareholder dialogue (see details below).
We support businesses in their CSR endeavours as part of a virtuous circle that creates value for investors, companies and society. We exclude from our investment portfolio companies that do not comply with key tenets of French or international law, as well as those that operate in the coal and tobacco sectors.
VOTING AND SHAREHOLDER DIALOGUE
We exercise our voting rights for all companies in our portfolio, in accordance with rigorous standards. In particular, we review all external resolutions relating to environmental issues and vote for those that are aligned with our voting principles and strategic policies.
We endeavour to enter into constructive dialogue whenever we detect an ESG issue with a company. Our shareholder dialogue is focused, in particular, on encouraging companies to formalise their ecology and energy transition strategy.
Our responsible investment approach is supplemented by the following practices:
RISK MANAGEMENT AND PROCEDURES
Our equity, bond, real-estate and infrastructure portfolios are managed by in-house teams in accordance with our own ESG risk management policies. Investments whose management is entrusted to third-party investment management companies, mainly in private equity and forestry, are subject to ESG monitoring.
ESG risks are also incorporated into our financial risk assessment and management tools and analysed by specialist staff in the same way as other risks.
LABELS AND CERTIFICATIONS
Thanks to our policy of acquiring properties that comply with the strictest standards, an increasing proportion of our real-estate portfolio is environmentally certified. Our forestry investments are managed by our management company, Société Forestière, in accordance with an ISO 9001 certified sustainable management charter, and carry the PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) label.
Caisse des Dépôts does not manage any third-party collective investment instruments. The mutual funds managed by the Group’s investment management companies factor in environmental, social and governance criteria in accordance with procedures suited to each investment vehicle. This information is available on individual management companies’ websites.
PROMOTING RESPONSIBLE INVESTMENT
Alongside other major investors, we leverage our influence to encourage financial system participants involved in the investment process to develop robust ESG policies and practices.
Caisse des Dépôts, CNP Assurances and Bpifrance are signatories to international principles and commitments relating to responsible investment: the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRIs), the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP-FI) and the United Nations Global Compact. Regarding climate finance, they are signatories to the Montreal Carbon Pledge. Caisse des Dépôts is also a member of the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC) and the Portfolio Decarbonisation Coalition (PDC), as well as a supporting institution of the ‘Five principles for mainstreaming climate action in financial institutions’.
In France, Caisse des Dépôts is a member of the Responsible Investment Forum (Forum pour l’Investissement Responsable – FIR) and participates in responsible finance work led by industry bodies like AF2I and Paris Europlace’s Finance for Tomorrow initiative.
COMMITTING TO TRANSPARENCY
In the interests of transparency, our Business Review and Sustainable Development Report sets out progress on the implementation of our Charter by all our investment businesses. We also publish an appendix to the Business Review and Sustainable Development Report, which reports in detail on the implementation of Article 173.6 of the Energy Transition for Green Growth Act, as well as a detailed annual report on implementation of the PRIs.