Gettyimages 1344398972

Voting in the 2024 AGM season

Our active ownership in action. Explore some of our most recent voting activities.

An integral part of being an active and responsible owner is exercising shareholder rights by voting. Every year we vote to, among other items, appoint the directors that run a company, encourage progress on ESG topics via shareholder resolutions, and approve climate transition plans.

For certain companies, we publicly disclose how we intend to vote ahead of a company’s annual general meeting. We do this to raise awareness in the market and inform the company that the issue is of particular importance to us.

Throughout 2024, PGGM will update this page with the votes for which we are pre-declaring. 

Goldman Sachs

PGGM Investments, in its capacity as investment manager and attorney-in-fact for Pensioenfonds Zorg en Welzijn (PFZW), will vote FOR the shareholder resolution. The resolution asks for Goldman Sachs to annually disclose its Clean Energy Supply Financing Ratio and is filed by The New York City Comptroller, on behalf of The New York City Employees’ Retirement System. 

The resolution asks that: “Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (“Goldman”) disclose annually its Clean Energy Supply Financing Ratio (“Ratio”), defined as its total financing through equity and debt underwriting, and project finance, in low-carbon energy supply relative to that in fossil-fuel energy supply. The disclosure, prepared at reasonable expense and excluding confidential information, shall describe Goldman’s methodology, including what it classifies as “low carbon” or “fossil fuel.” 

Goldmans Sachs currently implements a target of USD 750 billion in “financing, investing and advisory activity by 2030 to advance the climate transition and drive inclusive growth”. 1 However, it does not disclose more granular information on how much financing goes to clean energy or fossil fuel related projects, respectively. Third parties estimate that Goldman Sachs has financed approximately USD 143 billion to fossil fuels since 2015.2   

Clean-energy-to-fossil-fuel financing ratios represent a metric for assessing progress in financing the clean energy transition. Access to this information will enable investors to monitor the progress of the company on its climate commitment as part of the Net Zero Banking Alliance and hold them accountable. Goldman Sachs’ peers, Citigroup and JPMorgan, have committed to disclosing such a ratio.  

We are voting in this way in pursuance of our client PFZW’s Investment Policy 2025 and focus on the theme of climate change. We believe that the adoption and implementation of this resolution will enhance our ability to assess the bank’s transition risks and opportunities. 

Goldman Sachs

PepsiCo

PGGM Investments, in its capacity as investment manager and attorney-in-fact for Pensioenfonds Zorg en Welzijn (PFZW), will vote FOR the shareholder resolution, filed by Green Century Capital Management, Inc, asking PepsiCo Inc to report on risks associated with biodiversity loss in its supply chains and operations.  

The resolution asks that: “Shareholders request that PepsiCo complete a material biodiversity dependency and impact assessment and issue a corresponding public report to identify the extent to which the company’s supply chains and operations are vulnerable to risks associated with biodiversity loss.” 

PepsiCo has policies and targets in place to manage its environmental impact beyond climate change for their own operation and supply chain. For example, the company has set a goal to sustainably source 100% of their key ingredients by 2030, such as palm oil and cane sugar, and has policies in place on natural ecosystems. However, the company does not provide a clear analysis of where they should prioritize their efforts and why. 

Performing a materiality assessment of the company’s biodiversity-related dependencies, impacts, risks and opportunities would give shareholders a better understanding of the company’s approach to biodiversity and nature. The assessment could inform the company on the materiality of their impact on certain ecosystems and in certain areas. The Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) advises companies in the food and agriculture sector to identify potentially material dependencies and impacts using the LEAP approach. This approach helps companies to locate their interface with nature, evaluate their dependencies and impacts on nature, assess their nature-related risks and opportunities, and prepare to respond to these risks and opportunities.  

We are voting in this way in pursuance of our client PFZW’s Investment Policy 2025 and focus on the theme of biodiversity and nature loss. We believe that such a materiality assessment will support the company in identifying and addressing the extent to which the company’s supply chain and operations are vulnerable to risks associated with biodiversity loss. 

PGGM expects that companies, as well as financial institutions, will increasingly be asked to disclose and mitigate their dependencies and impacts on nature, as established in the target 15 of the UN Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, agreed in December 2022.  

PepsiCo

Nestlé S.A.

A coalition of Nestlé shareholders, coordinated by the responsible investment group ShareAction, has filed a resolution challenging the world’s largest food company to improve its sales of healthy food products. We support this resolution and urge Nestlé to set a target to increase the proportion of its sales from healthier products.

PGGM Investments, in its capacity as investment manager and as attorney-in-fact for Pensioenfonds Zorg en Welzijn (PFZW), will vote FOR the ShareAction shareholder proposal calling on Nestlé to amend their Articles of Association to include an annual report on a number of material ESG matters and a clear ambition to increase their sales of healthier products.

The resolution requests: “that for each financial year, the Board of Directors shall prepare a report on sustainable development, social issues, employment matters, respect for human rights and anticorruption, which presents the results achieved in relation to certain environmental, social and governance (ESG) key performance indicators (KPIs). These KPIs will include absolute and proportional sales figures for food and beverage according to their healthfulness, as defined by a government-endorsed Nutrient Profiling Model. The company will set a timebound target to increase the proportion of its sales derived from these healthier products.”

  • The world’s population is suffering from an obesity epidemic, largely fueled by the consumption of unhealthy products in excessive quantities. Nestlé is the largest food company in the world based on revenue. However, many products Nestlé sells are not considered to be healthy. The Health Star Rating, a system used in Australia and New Zealand to rate the healthiness of food, which Nestlé itself has adopted, notes that over 50% of Nestlé’s sales are not considered to be healthy.
  • Nestlé is already performing well on leading standards such as the Access to Nutrition Index. This however does not mean that there is no further room for improvement of its entire product portfolio. Furthermore, establishing a clear strategy on improving the health aspects of Nestlé’s products in its Articles of Association makes this topic much less dependent on any future changes in Nestlé’s management and/or ambition.

Whilst PGGM believes that consumers are ultimately responsible for the choices they make, companies like Nestlé can help guide consumers in choosing healthier alternatives. This can for example be done through responsible marketing and consumer education but also by reformulating existing products to make them less unhealthy. Reaffirming Nestlé’s commitment to improving global health by including such ambitions in their Articles of Association is a step we support.

The leadership of Nestlé on improving nutrition can be cemented for the foreseeable future by adding the proposed text to their Articles of Association. The goals that will be set can become the standard to which other food companies can be held accountable.

Nestlé S.A.

Climate Change

As an active owner, PGGM urges companies to implement decarbonization strategies appropriate to their businesses and aligned with the goals of the Paris Agreement. We also focus on encouraging climate solutions that accelerate society's transition and will benefit their long term performance.

More about climate change

Gettyimages 1266765048

As responsible investor, PGGM calls upon companies to implement targets and strategies to minimize their contribution to nature and biodiversity loss. The strategies should be appropriate to their businesses and aligned with the goals of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework. 

More about Nature and biodiversity

Human rights

PGGM seeks to contribute to a society in which economic development is not at the expense of human rights. In taking our responsibility to respect human rights, we adopt standards such as the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). We ask companies to not only identify salient human rights risks in their business and supply chains but also ensure that a robust policy and implementation plan are in place to safeguard human rights.

More about Human rights

Health

As an investor working for pension funds with strong ties to the healthcare sector, PGGM wants to play its part in helping people live healthy, prosperous lives. We therefore invest in healthcare solutions but also engage with companies to address subjects such as prevention and good access to affordable healthcare.

More about Health

Overview

Climate Change

As an active owner, PGGM urges companies to implement decarbonization strategies appropriate to their businesses and aligned with the goals of the Paris Agreement. We also focus on encouraging climate solutions that accelerate society's transition and will benefit their long term performance.

More about climate change