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Martin Currie Furthers Purpose of Investing To Improve Lives

Wednesday, 22 May 2024 10:15 AM

Franklin Templeton

Annual report highlights firm's stewardship and sustainability leadership within asset management

EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND / ACCESSWIRE / May 22, 2024 / Martin Currie, the active equity specialist and steward of £20.1 billion in assets under management as of March 31, 2024, released its annual report detailing the firm's stewardship, sustainability, and impact initiatives over the past year. Martin Currie is a specialist investment manager of Franklin Templeton.

"During this period, we worked to reaffirm and strengthen our stewardship approach and values in support of our purpose of Investing to Improve Lives. We believe financial security creates opportunity and wellbeing in people's lives, while long-term thinking supports our society and planet. Investing to improve lives is the standard we hold ourselves to, from innovative strategies to powerful conversations and active stewardship," said Jen Mair, Chief Executive Officer of Martin Currie.

Martin Currie's business strategy centers on managing and enhancing the risk-adjusted returns on clients' capital. The firm sees financial returns, governance, and sustainability factors to be fundamentally intertwined and believes that material governance and sustainability risks and opportunities are likely to materialize over medium- to long-term time horizons.

"We continue to firmly believe that integrating material governance and sustainability factors into an investment analysis complemented by active ownership is consistent with our fiduciary duty," said David Sheasby, Head of Stewardship, Sustainability and Impact of Martin Currie.

Proxy Voting and Engagement Activities

In 2023, Martin Currie initiated 647 total engagements with the companies in which it invests, including three collaborative engagements with other investors. These engagements covered a total of 233 companies and 29 markets. The firm also voted at 530 shareholder meetings across 34 global markets.

Martin Currie Receives Top Ratings from Principles of Responsible Investment

The Principles of Responsible Investment oversees the largest global reporting project on responsible investment. In 2023, Martin Currie earned five stars across all three of the PRI's reporting modules relevant to its business.1 These were the ‘Public Governance and Strategy' and ‘Confidence building measures' segments that apply to all asset managers, as well as the ‘Direct Listed equity - Active Fundamental' module, which is specific to the equity asset class. Martin Currie's excellent ratings far exceed the PRI median and represent a strong endorsement of the firm's investor-led stewardship model.

Launch of First Social Impact Equity Strategy

In June 2023, Martin Currie broadened its product capabilities with the creation of an Impact Equity team and the launch of an innovative new product, the Martin Currie Improving Society strategy. It aims to take advantage of mispricing opportunities while making a positive social impact by investing in companies whose products and services positively impact fundamental human needs and create the conditions for advancements in equity. Active management is a fundamental tenet of the strategy, with structured engagement on company-specific impact goals, sustainability issues and business topics at the heart of the investment process. The strategy is available to investors in Canada and the U.K.

Progress on Net Zero Commitment

Martin Currie became a signatory to the Net Zero Asset Managers (NZAM) initiative in July 2021, recognizing the urgent need to accelerate the transition towards global net zero greenhouse gas emissions. As of the end of 2023, 18.1% of Martin Currie's assets were committed to being managed in line with net zero, an increase from the firm's initial commitment in 2022 of 15.4% of assets. The firm continues to work with its investment teams and collaborate with clients to increase the commitment to 100% of assets by 2050.

Diversity and Inclusion

Martin Currie is on a continuous journey to improve the diversity of its workforce and create an environment that recognizes how different perspectives, knowledge and attitudes can inform the firm's approach to providing solutions for clients. Martin Currie understands that a culture of inclusion starts at the top, and on October 1, 2023, the firm appointed Jennifer Mair as its first female CEO in its more than 140 years of history. Mair first joined Martin Currie in 2015 and previously served as the firm's Chief Operating Officer and as a Director of Martin Currie Investment Management Limited.

In 2021, Martin Currie set ambitious diversity targets across the business, reflecting the firm's aspirations to address diversity challenges in a systematic manner. Since the establishment of those targets, Martin Currie has seen continuous progress in increasing representation across many areas of its business, including its investment teams, leading to an increase in gender diversity from its 2021 baseline of 15% to 29% in 2023. Martin Currie has also continued partnerships with Black Professionals Scotland and Salvesen Mindroom, a charity that champions neurodiversity, to promote wider aspects of diversity across its business.

About Martin Currie

Martin Currie is a global active equity specialist and part of Franklin Templeton, one of the world's leading asset managers. Founded in Scotland in the late 19th century, today we build concentrated, best-idea portfolios that create conviction in fast-changing markets. Our equity teams manage global and regional products that span developed and emerging markets.

Talented, autonomous teams are backed by a distinctive and supportive investment culture. With stewardship at the heart of our business, we employ long-term, original thinking to deliver sustainable investment returns.

We are fundamental, long-term investors managing assets globally for some of the world's largest asset owners.

About Franklin Templeton

Franklin Resources, Inc. [NYSE:BEN] is a global investment management organization with subsidiaries operating as Franklin Templeton and serving clients in over 150 countries. Franklin Templeton's mission is to help clients achieve better outcomes through investment management expertise, wealth management and technology solutions. Through its specialist investment managers, the company offers specialization on a global scale, bringing extensive capabilities in fixed income, equity, alternatives and multi-asset solutions. With more than 1,500 investment professionals, and offices in major financial markets around the world, the California-based company has over 75 years of investment experience and over $1.6 trillion in assets under management as of March 31, 2024. For more information, please visit and follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

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  1. Signatories to the Principles of Responsible Investment commit to reporting on their responsible investment activities when signing the Principles. Investors submit reports during the annual reporting cycle. Martin Currie's 2023 PRI score covered the 2022 calendar year. Martin Currie did not pay for the rating. More information is available at:

All investments involve risks, including possible loss of principal.

Investing in foreign markets introduces a risk where adverse movements in currency exchange rates could result in a decrease in the value of your investment.

This strategy may hold a limited number of investments. If one of these investments falls in value this can have a greater impact on the strategy's value than if it held a larger number of investments.

Smaller companies may be riskier and their shares may be less liquid than larger companies, meaning that their share price may be more volatile.

Emerging markets or less developed countries may face more political, economic or structural challenges than developed countries. Accordingly, investment in emerging markets is generally characterised by higher levels of risk than investment in fully developed markets.

The strategy may invest in derivatives, Index futures and FX forwards to obtain, increase or reduce exposure to underlying assets.

The use of derivatives may result in greater fluctuations of returns due to the value of the derivative not moving in line with the underlying assets. Certain types of derivatives can be difficult to purchase or sell in certain market conditions.

This material is intended to be of general interest only and should not be construed as individual investment advice or a recommendation or solicitation to buy, sell or hold any security or to adopt any investment strategy. It does not constitute legal or tax advice. This material may not be reproduced, distributed or published without prior written permission from Franklin Templeton.

The views expressed are those of the investment manager and the comments, opinions and analyses are rendered as at publication date and may change without notice. The underlying assumptions and these views are subject to change based on market and other conditions and may differ from other portfolio managers or of the firm as a whole. The information provided in this material is not intended as a complete analysis of every material fact regarding any country, region or market. There is no assurance that any prediction, projection or forecast on the economy, stock market, bond market or the economic trends of the markets will be realized. The value of investments and the income from them can go down as well as up and you may not get back the full amount that you invested. Past performance is not necessarily indicative nor a guarantee of future performance. All investments involve risks, including possible loss of principal.

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