Are You Among This Year’s Sustainability Stars?

DJSI 2018: METRO, DSM, Essity, and Telenet among the industry leaders
DJSI 2018 Sustainability Stars
Publ. date 13 Sep 2018
On 13th September 2018, RobecoSAM and S&P Dow Jones Indices announced the results of the annual Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI) review. We are happy to announce that all our customers from eight different countries entered or continued their inclusion in the DJSI, of which four are now industry leaders. Among the companies that were newly added in this year’s Indices are Diageo, General Mills, Assicurazioni Generali, and BBVA whereas Henkel, BASF, and Bayer have been deleted from the index.

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In this year’s assessment, RobecoSAM applied the criteria of Climate Strategy to all industries in order to create more alignment with CDP and TCFD. The rationale behind the inclusion is that climate change is gaining importance for all companies and not only for production companies, but also for service-oriented companies. RobecoSAM requires all companies to have a solid minimum when it comes to a company’s approach to climate change. Outcomes of the Corporate Sustainability Assessment of the industrials, the materials and the consumer discretionary industry show on average lower scores in comparison with the 2017 assessment. On the other hand, the telecommunications sector and the consumer staples industry show higher average scores in 2018 compared to last year. 

Another major development was the change in the methodology of the Media and Stakeholder Analysis (MSA). The key takeaway is that in the previous situation companies were rewarded with 20-30% for each criterion with a MSA sub-question in the DJSI-questionnaire, in case the Media and Stakeholder Analysis didn’t produce any negative input. Today these points will be distributed over the remaining sub-criteria, resulting in a lower score per criterion for companies that did not score the full 100%. The result is a decreased average score (for all industries) just below the 60-point marker where it was between 60-70 points last year.

For more background, please refer to the 2018 DJSI review presentation by RobecoSAM.

Materials: Koninklijke DSM NV claims industry leadership
DSM is the number 1 in the chemicals sector for the 2018 assessment. The company is praised for its improvement in Human Capital Development, Water Related Risks, and Innovation Management which are all seen as key drivers for the chemical industry. Additionally, DSM performs well on conducting risk assessment to better understand the human and environmental impacts in this highly competitive industry.

Media: Telenet takes over industry leader position
Telenet has taken over the industry leadership position in the media industry this year again. Telenet is recognized by RobecoSAM on its shift towards digitalization and the increased revenues from online market segments. Next to the development of digitalization, industry leaders in the media industry are praised for the implementation of cybersecurity strategies to prevent breaches and keep customer information and companies’ own data safe.

Food & Staples Retailing: METRO remains at the top spot
METRO is recognized by RobecoSAM for its performance on Health & Nutrition and Human Capital Development, which are two major drivers in the Food & Staples Retailing Industry. Furthermore, another major industry driver is the use of new technologies to keep up with the growing consumer demand for healthy and natural choices, and. the efficiency enhancement in the communication towards customers.

Insurance: Allianz retains the lead in the insurance industry group
As being named industry leader last year, Allianz was able to retain its number 1 position in the index this year. The insurance industry has shown leadership in integrating sustainability consideration into its core business, with Allianz being praised for its performance in financial inclusion and climate strategy. Another development in the industry is related to digitalization as especially life insurance companies are exploring ways to offer innovative products to their clients to further incentivize healthier lifestyles. A special congratulations goes to Assicurazioni Generali which was added to the World Index this year.

Telecommunications: True Corp ranked as the industry leader
The Thai Telecommunication Company ranked as the industry leader in the highly competitive industry. The company is praised for its performance in the social part on Human Capital Development and Talent Attraction and Retention. Additionally, the company’s performance on network reliability and the ability to invest in network infrastructure are crucial.

Finch & Beak helps you to accelerate results from ESG benchmarking

With 15 years of experience in Dow Jones Sustainability Index support and a long-term collaboration with RobecoSAM, Finch & Beak is one of Europe’s leading experts in improving our client’s sustainability programs and ESG benchmark performance.

Finch & Beak typically works for frontrunners with a continuous improvement method. Our work is characterized by a pragmatic approach that leverages existing assets in the short term while identifying opportunities for strategic development in the future. Our method proves its success by the fact that none of our DJSI customers was ever delisted from the Dow Jones Sustainability Index on our watch. Additionally, more than half of them ranked in the top 5% of their respective industry. In 2018 we are supporting customers across eight countries with their DJSI 2018 approach, and we welcomed more than fifty participants to the DJSI trainings we hosted together with RobecoSAM last year.

If your organization is looking to accelerate its sustainability performance, please download our service description or contact Josée van der Hoek, Director and DJSI expert at josee@finchandbeak.com or call +31 6 28 02 18 80.

About the Dow Jones Sustainability Index

Launched in 1999, the DJSI is the major standard for corporate sustainability. This year, more than 3,500 of the world’s largest companies in both developed and emerging markets were invited to take part in RobecoSAM’s Corporate Sustainability Assessment, in which the most financially material environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors are assessed. Only leading companies that are best equipped to recognize and respond to emerging opportunities and risks, resulting from global sustainability trends, are selected for inclusion in the DJSI.

Image source: Ken Lund, Flickr

About Bas Nuijten

Sustainability professional with the aim to help organizations to continuously improve their sustainability strategies. | 
bas@finchandbeak.com

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