Three ways to make a difference
There are three main elements of our approach:
1. When you think of ethical investing, you most-likely think of what gets excluded - what we call a negative screen. This is an important part of the story if you don’t want your money funding things like tobacco, uranium or coal mining, exploitation of people or old growth forest logging.
2. Also important, is the positive side. With Australian Ethical, your money can help build a new low-carbon economy, fund medical breakthroughs, technology breakthroughs, efficient transport and more.
3. The third element of our ethical approach is engagement. We use our influence to engage with the management of companies over ethical issues, with the goal of improving their ethical behaviour.
Our Ethical Charter: Unchanged since 1986
The Australian Ethical Charter is a series of statements that guide both the positive side (investments we seek out) and the negative side (investments we avoid) of our ethical approach.
We are proud to say that it has not changed since our inception in 1986.
To the right is a summary of the main points of our charter.
We seek out positive investments that support: People Quality Sustainability
We avoid investments that cause unecessary harm to: People Animals Society Environment
We engage with companies that we do invest in, if they start doing something that is not aligned with our ethical values.
We engage with companies that we don’t invest in yet, if we would like to invest in the company once they’ve changed certain behaviours.
We have an Advocacy Fund that invests in some companies that we wouldn’t normally (because of our ethical charter), for the purpose of using our rights as a shareholder to raise ethical issues.
Dear Tomra, We like your recycling machines, but not tobacco
Australian Ethical has a zero tolerance stance on tobacco manufacturing. There is nothing positive about it.
So when Tomra - a successful company we have long invested in that makes reverse-vending recycling machines - acquired a company that makes tobacco sorting machines, we engaged with their senior management and other shareholders, and put forward a resolution at the Tomra AGM.
Who we invest in
We invest in companies that we expect to perform well financially, and do good for the world.
For example, we invest in the Australian company Cochlear, who have been improving the lives of hearing-impaired people through innovative technology for many years.
We invest in companies involved in renewable and clean energy, healthcare, efficient transport, biotechnology, recycling and waste management, and more.
Cochlear has delivered three decades of hearing innovation to over 250,000 people worldwide