Walden Acts to Protect Shareholder Rights
by From the Fall, 2007 issue of Values
More than 20 years ago, Walden became one of the first investment firms to sponsor a shareholder resolution (on labor negotiations at uniform services company Angelica Corporation in 1986). As a leader in effective use of shareholder resolutions to influence corporate accountability, Walden is alarmed by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announcement of a set of proposals that include the possible elimination of the right of investors to sponsor shareholder resolutions.
We have pursued a multi-pronged strategy to help protect shareholder rights, working with a cross-section of investors representing trillions of dollars of assets under management. The strength of our unified voice has been impressive and, except for a few companies and trade associations, the SEC has received little support for its test proposals.
Since the SEC announcement, Walden:
· Testified at a hearing held by the House Committee on Financial Services representing Walden and the Social Investment Forum (SIF).
· Led an initiative in which 70 investors co-signed a letter to approximately 100 companies and participated in many follow-up calls, urging the companies to consider the rights of shareholders if they planned to provide comments to the SEC.
· Through Tim Smith, acted as a spokesperson for the industry and SIF, talking to numerous reporters and participating in media news events.
· Helped craft an industry-wide response to counter attempts by the Business Roundtable and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to dismantle shareholders’ right to file resolutions.
We continue to respond to the SEC action with the high level of urgency it deserves, and to be a voice before investors, Congress, and the SEC against translating the proposals into governing rules.
The information contained herein has been prepared from sources and data we believe to be reliable, but we make no guarantee as to its adequacy, accuracy, timeliness or completeness. We cannot and do not guarantee the suitability or profitability of any particular investment. No information herein is intended as an offer or solicitation of an offer to sell or buy, or as a sponsorship of any company, security, or fund. Neither Walden nor any of its contributors make any representations about the suitability of the information contained herein. Opinions expressed herein are subject to change without notice. The writings of authors do not necessarily represent the views of Walden Asset Management, its parent, or affiliated entities. There are certain risks involved with investing, including various risks depending on the type of investment vehicle being used.
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