Meeschaert Group is a pioneer in socially responsible investment. In 1983, the Group launched Nouvelle Stratégie 50, France’s first-ever ethical investment fund. The fund has received numerous awards and its performance, which far surpasses that of many other funds in its category (AMF classification: Balanced), proves that SRI funds can in fact yield high returns.
Meeschaert Asset Management, the Group’s asset management subsidiary, signed the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) in 2009.
By becoming a signatory, the company made the following commitments:
– Take ESG issues into consideration in investment-related analysis and decision-making procedures
– Be an active investor and take ESG issues into consideration in shareholder policies and practices.
– Request that companies publish appropriate information with regard to ESG issues.
– Promote the acceptance and application of the Principles for Responsible Investment among other actors in asset management.
– Work together to make the application of the Principles for Responsible Investment more efficient.
– Individually report on the activities and progress made with regard to the application of the Principles for Responsible Investment.
Following the first assessment report on the Group’s practices in these areas, paths towards improvement are gradually integrated. Here are a few examples of goals the company has set:
– Implement a policy that specifically makes reference to responsible investments (ESG criteria), laid out within the framework of a strategic program
– Continue to work together to provide training for the asset management teams on these themes
– Ensure that the relevant ESG information is available to all managers, through the use of a new internal database
– Define the objectives of shareholder commitment and assess the results obtained.
In this example, the financial management procedure, combined with the application of the ethics charter (approaches by exclusion and “best-in-class”), is enriched by an innovative positive integration approach allowing for the selection of mid-sized companies whose business is in line with “human ecology”.