Aktia's sustainable investments are based on the idea that businesses operating in a responsible manner, in accordance with sustainable norms, are more profitable and have a better competitive edge in the long term than companies that do not adhere to these norms.
Aktia's aim regarding asset management is to adhere to principles of responsibility and sustainability. Aktia applies the principles of responsible investment to both Aktia Fund Management Company Ltd's investment funds and our other investment services provided to institutional investors.
Since 2006, Aktia's investment funds are managed in accordance with Aktia Fund Management Company Ltd's principles of responsible investments. The principles are updated regularly; the latest revision took place in 2018. The principles are based on integration, exclusion and responsible ownership.
Environmental, social and governance factors (ESG factors) are integrated into the investment process. We identify ESG risks and opportunities and thereby create a better basis for sound investment decisions.
We have determined that certain forms of activity, while legitimate, can be subject to negative events such as claims for compensation and unfavourable publicity, which can pose risks that are difficult to predict or quantify. Therefore, Aktia's investment strategy is to avoid investments in companies with such risk profile, and the funds avoid direct investments in companies whose main business area is within the gambling, tobacco and weapons industries. The funds also avoid direct investments in companies using child labour.
In practicing our owner governance, we observe Aktia Fund Management Company Ltd's ownership policy. It allows for Aktia to vote, if needed, on the funds' behalf at annual meetings. The purpose is to look after the participation holders' joint interests in the long term. The ownership policy was last updated in 2012. Aktia assumes that Finnish listed companies observe the principles of the Finnish Corporate Governance Code published by the Securities Market Association.
During 2016 Aktia has started a project aimed at raising our profile as a responsible investor. From 31.1.2017 Aktia has chosen ISS-Ethix as a partner with regard to engagement and screening. Using the screening service we identify companies that have breached international standards regarding the environment, society and good governance. Using the engagement service we can help guide these companies in a positive direction on ESG issues.
Institutional customers are given the option to invest according to their own responsibility criteria and guidelines. For each customer's investment portfolio, the selected financial instruments correspond to the customer's agreed principles of responsible investment. In this manner, the customers can prioritise responsible companies that respect the environment, society and follow good governance.
From the beginning of 2016 Aktia is regularly publishing an overview of responsible investment. This overview includes the CO2 profile of Aktia's equity funds. The overview is available on Aktia's web site
With goal-oriented activities, we have been able to achieve a solid position within our industry. Over many years our business model and expert staff have received very positive responses in independent customer surveys. Asset Management has been named Finland's best institutional asset manager in the SFR (Scandinavian Financial Research) surveys in 2010, 2012 and 2013 (Platinum Award), and placed in the top two in 2011, 2015, 2016 and 2017 (Gold Award). In addition to this Morningstar named us best interest fund manager in Finland in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2018 and 2019 among all domestic and global managers active in Finland.
The Swedish Tell Media Group, specialised in fund analysis, has for the sixth year in row named our fund analyst team for external investment funds as the best in Finland (2010-2015). According to the response, our strengths are i.e. analysis and choice of investment products, the combination of investment products, a coherent investment process and successful operations