Arnhem - A growing number of financial investors have been adopting corporate social responsibility (CSR) as a selection criterion for their investments in recent years. When assessing the creditworthiness of companies, investors have always used traditional credit rating agencies such as Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s. These agencies mainly assess the financial and business risks to which companies are exposed and appraise their capacity to manage these risks.
A relatively new development in recent years is for CSR rating agencies such as Oekom and Vigeo to evaluate companies on their sustainable business operations and to assess how this sustainability is developing. They look at social factors such as corporate governance, and how the company handles its responsibility (both towards its customers and for its products), and how it treats its employees. Environmental factors such as emissions of harmful substances and consumption of energy and water are also important. The combined evaluation is then expressed in the form of a sustainability rating.
CSR ratings are becoming an increasingly important aspect of investment decisions, alongside credit ratings. Some investors will only invest in companies that satisfy a specific minimum CSR rating level. This is often determined by the specific sustainability focus of an investment portfolio.
Rating upgrade by Oekom
In recent months, CSR rating agency Oekom has been assessing Alliander with a view to drawing up a new sustainability rating. Based on its latest findings, it has upgraded Alliander’s rating from B to B+ (on a scale of A+ (highest) to D- (lowest)). According to Oekom, this sustainability rating puts Alliander among the industry leaders in the utilities sector. The new rating is the result of Alliander’s long-term focus on sustainable business operations over many years and its determination to maintain this commitment.
Oekom is a German organisation which frequently works on behalf of German investors. Oekom regularly evaluates Alliander. For more information about Oekom and how to obtain the rating report, visithttp://www.oekom-research.com .