Update: S&P Global Extends its Invitation List for the CSA

More than 10,000 companies to be invited for the Corporate Sustainability Assessment (CSA)
Update: S&P Global Extends its Invitation List for the CSA
Publ. date 4 May 2021
S&P Global's Corporate Sustainability Assessment (CSA), the basis for selecting companies into the Dow Jones Sustainability Index, is now accessible for a larger group of companies. Last month, S&P Global announced to even further extend the group of companies to over 10,000,  inviting companies that are of interest to the broader investment community. Finch & Beak is launching a special offer for companies to help them make the most of their (first) active participation in the assessment.

Since taking over the ESG ratings and benchmarking arm from RobecoSAM at the end of 2019, S&P Global has been making big steps in extending the reach and application of the Corporate Sustainability Assessment (better known as the DJSI-questionnaire). The scope of companies assessed based on public information was already extended, and now more companies also have the opportunity to provide their ESG information directly by actively filling out the CSA.

What is the CSA?

The Corporate Sustainability Assessment is an assessment of a company's ESG performance. It results in a total sustainability score (0-100 points), which is a weighted average score resulting from the industry-specific questionnaire across ± 20-30 governance/economic, environmental and social criteria.

S&P Global invites selected companies to participate in the annual Corporate Sustainability Assessment, on a voluntairy basis and free of charge. In case the company choses not to actively participate in the assessment, it may be assesed based on publicly available information (such as annual reports and corporate website). The resulting ESG scores are used across a wide range of S&P Global's services for the investor community, and are now also published and available to the wider public.

More companies invited to participate in the CSA as of 2021

As of 2021, the list of invited companies has been extended: approximately 3,500 invited companies are eligible for inclusion the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI). Additionally, a further group of 1,500 companies is now also invited. They are not eligible for inclusion in the DJSI, but they can be included in the wider S&P ESG Index series if qualified based on their scores. This group also includes companies that are not invited for consideration in any DJSI, but were included in any of the following S&P Dow Jones indices as of December 31st, 2020. S&P Global has published the list of invited companies, showing which companies are invited and for which indices they are eligible.

Last month, S&P Global also announced to even further extend the group of companies to over 10,000, and invite an additional group of approximately 5,000 companies that are of interest to the broader investment community and therefore part of S&P Global’s research universe. 

About the S&P ESG Index series

The S&P ESG indices are broad-based, market-cap-weighted indices designed to measure the performance of securities meeting sustainability criteria, while maintaining similar overall industry group weights as their underlying benchmark. More information on the S&P ESG Index series is  available on S&P Global's website.

Same assessment, different timeline

Companies eligible for inclusion in one or more DJSI or S&P ESG Indices are invited to complete the CSA questionnaire in different time windows. DJSI-eligible companies (Group A) are currently working on their assessment, and have an extended deadline due to the continuing impact of Covid-19 on the 13th of July, 2021.

Meanwhile, the assessment for the 'new' group of companies eligible for the wider S&P ESG Index series, Group B, has opened on the 12th of May, and closes for submission on the 3rd of August.

Tuesday April 20, 2021:
Official invitation of eligible companies by email

Wednesday May 12, 2021:
Start of online questionnaire process

Tuesday August 3, 2021:
Submission deadline

Friday November 12, 2021:
Announcement of 2021 CSA results

Companies in Group C receive an invite between June and September 2021. These companies may opt for a so-called Core CSA consisting of 70 questions, for which the assessment will open on December 1st. Alternatively, if the company prefers to complete the Full CSA, consisting of approximately 100 questions, the assessment can start within 48 hours of the company's request. In both cases, the deadline for submission is 13 January 2022, with results announced at the end of March 2022.

Kickstarting your CSA participation

Participating in the CSA for the first time can be a challenge, but having a good plan-of-action and preparation helps a lot. As a special offer for companies eligible for the S&P ESG Index series, starting their assessment in June, Finch & Beak is launching a CSA for Rookies Accelerator service: a lean support package to help you get the best result and leverage the learnings.

It starts with of an assessment of the company's ESG maturity and a gap-analysis of aspects that the CSA requires to be publicly disclosed. Then, during a workshop with your team to discuss the initial findings and the company's internal insights and approach on main challenges. The conclusions are bundled and complemented with specific recommendations for short, mid, and long-term actions to improve and an analysis of your CSA 2021 results in Q4.

Ready to maximize your company's CSA performance?

With more than 15 years of experience in Corporate Sustainability Assessment support and a long-term collaboration with SAM/S&P Global, Finch & Beak has become Europe’s leading expert in assisting companies with their submission to ESG benchmarks. Interested in our support? Please download the service description in the download section or contact Josée van der Hoek, Director, at josee@finchandbeak.com or call her at +34 682 048 301.

Photo by Parsoa Khorsand on Unsplash

About Nikkie Vinke

Multidisciplinary advisor in ESG benchmarking, sustainability strategy development and execution. | nikkie@finchandbeak.com

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