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May 22, 2019

SASB’s Investor Advisory Group recruits 15 new members – and new chair

New asset management representation from Canada, France, Japan, Norway and UK

The Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) today announced the expansion of its Investor Advisory Group (IAG), a collection of leading asset owners and managers committed to improving sustainability-related disclosure to investors.

Fifteen new firms have joined the IAG, which has named Barbara Zvan, chief risk and strategy officer of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, as the group’s new chair.

Both announcements, made at the IAG’s meeting in London today, aim to reflect the growing relevance of SASB’s sustainability standards for global institutional investors, with the addition of new representation from Canada, France, Japan, Norway and the UK.

‘SASB welcomes the IAG’s new members as well as its new chair,’ says SASB CEO Madelyn Antoncic in a statement. ‘Barbara’s deep experience in risk management and investment strategy at one of the world’s largest pension funds makes her uniquely suited to lead the IAG. SASB standards help ensure investors have access to comparable, consistent and reliable information on financially material sustainability topics.

‘Our 15 new IAG members, alongside the founding members of this group, will contribute enormously to increasing awareness of SASB’s standards throughout the world.’

The 15 new member institutions are:

– AXA Investment Managers

– Brunel Pension Partnership

– Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec 

– Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

– Fidelity Investments

– Franklin Templeton Investments

– Harvard Management Company

– Hermes Investment Management

– Legal & General Investment Management America

– Manulife Investment Management

– Neuberger Berman

– Nissay Asset Management

– Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM)

– Putnam Investments

– Schroders.

‘Our mission is to safeguard and build wealth for future generations,’ notes Carine Smith Ihenacho, NBIM’s chief corporate governance officer. ‘As a long-term, universal investor, we have an interest in sustainable development. We urge [the supply of] standardized, concrete and relevant sustainability data and we ask companies to go from words to numbers – because what gets measured gets managed.’

SASB established the IAG in late 2016 to provide investor feedback and guidance for the organization and to demonstrate investor support for a market standard for investor-focused sustainability disclosure. A total of 44 firms, accounting for more than $32 tn in assets under management, now serve as IAG members.

‘As the new chair of the IAG, I hope our group of 44 leading institutional investors will show how crucial standardized sustainability disclosure is to the world’s capital markets,’ says Zvan.