CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Appleseed Fund (APPLX, APPIX) has re-filed a shareholder resolution with Nabors Industries (NBR), requesting that the company begin publishing an annual sustainability report. Appleseed Fund first filed the resolution at Nabors Industries’ June 2014 annual shareholder meeting, where it received 43.5 percent of votes cast.
“Support for our resolution was inspiring and encouraging,” said Matthew Blume, manager of shareholder advocacy for Appleseed Fund. “While many resolutions struggle to cross the 10 percent threshold initially, the fact that ours received more than four times that support speaks volumes. Shareholders are not satisfied with management’s transparency regarding the environmental, social and governance issues facing Nabors, and we intend to make sure that those shareholders are heard.”
Appleseed Fund has again asked Nabors to disclose its management of greenhouse gas emissions, water usage and other adverse environmental impacts of its operations. It also asks Nabors management to provide transparency on the link between executive compensation and its financial, environmental and social performance. The resolution suggests that the company adhere to reporting guidelines outlined by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), a nonprofit that promotes economic sustainability.
“Nabors’ management continues to skirt around important issues such as the potentially harmful chemical compounds used in its operations and how it disposes of them,” Blume continued. “Shareholders have a right to be fully informed about the risks that the company faces. A comprehensive sustainability report will be a huge step in the right direction.”
Responding to Appleseed Fund’s 2014 resolutions, Nabors management stated that the sustainability-related information on its website was sufficient for informing investors about ESG issues relevant to its business. Blume disagrees, contending that the limited information on Nabors’ website falls short of what shareholders, analysts and data aggregators are seeking.
“Nabors’ stakeholders require comprehensive, standardized and comparable reporting that addresses the company’s risks, goals and opportunities regarding ESG-related issues. The company’s current efforts simply do not meet the needs of stakeholders.”
According to a 2013 KPMG study on corporate responsibility, more than 90 percent of Global Fortune 250 companies produce sustainability reports; four out of five of those reports are based on the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) guidelines.1 Among the top 100 U.S. companies by revenue, approximately 85 percent produce sustainability reports.
“Increasingly, companies are identifying ESG factors relevant to their business and addressing them through sustainability programs and reports,” said Blume.
“Research suggests that the market ascribes higher valuations to those companies that actively address sustainability issues and provide full transparency. We hope that Nabors will take advantage of this opportunity to increase its credibility in the marketplace, and to connect with shareholders in a meaningful way,” he concluded.
About Appleseed Fund
Appleseed Fund is a mutual fund with more than $260 million under management that seeks to generate market-beating returns by making prudent, disciplined and sustainable investments in a variety of asset classes around the world. The Fund is managed by Pekin Singer Strauss Asset Management, an SEC registered firm dedicated to value investing. For more information, visit appleseedfund.com.
Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The investment return and principal value of an investment in the Fund will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost.
As of 12/31/2014 the Fund had a percentage allocation of 2.8% to Nabors Industries Ltd. (NBR)
You should carefully consider the investment objectives, potential risks, management fees, and charges and expenses of the Fund before investing. The Fund’s prospectus contains this and other information about the Fund and should be read carefully before investing. You may obtain a current copy of the Fund’s prospectus by calling 1-800-470-1029. Distributed by Unified Financial Securities, Inc., 2960 North Meridian Street, Suite 300, Indianapolis, IN 46208. (Member FINRA)