Sustainable investment research
At the end of 2014, the Triodos Sustainable Investment Universe for Triodos SICAV I included a total of 287 companies. Of these companies, 124 qualified as pioneers due to the nature of the products and services that they offer and 163 companies qualified as best-in-class. Compared with year-end 2013, the number of companies included in the universe has declined by a net total of four. In 2014, 47 companies were added to the Triodos Sustainable Investment Universe and 51 companies were removed. Three companies were under review at year-end 2014: Akzo Nobel from the Netherlands, for involvement in unconventional oil and gas exploration, and both Royal Philips, also from the Netherlands, and US-based Medtronic for concerns related to violation of legislation.
The fund actively monitors the companies in its investment universe. It keeps track of possible violations of the sustainability criteria by monitoring news articles, campaigns by non-governmental organizations and reports from clients. When we suspect a potential breach of the minimum standards, we initiate a dialogue with the company involved. In 2014, two such alerts led to the removal of two companies from the Triodos Sustainable Investment Universe. Spanish Telefónica was removed due to concerns about structural violation of anti-trust laws, while US-based Google was removed from the Triodos Sustainable Investment Universe because of the acquisition of robotics companies, some of which are involved in weapon-related products.
The list of sovereign issuers included in the Triodos Sustainable Investment Universe at year-end 2014 did not change.