Institutional Shareholder Services Helps Clearstream Enhance Proxy Voting Service
Innovative New Service Facilitates Active Ownership through Domestic and Cross-Border Voting
Rockville,MD; London, U.K. – March 1, 2012 – Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), a leading provider of end-to-end corporate governance solutions, today announced that Clearstream, has launched an enhanced proxy voting service facilitated through ISS’ ProxyExchange™ platform.
The new service brings together Clearstream’s expertise of Eurobonds, equities, fixed income and investment funds with ISS’ 26 years of corporate governance experience and its deep knowledge of local market proxy voting practices for both its International Central Securities Depository (ICSD) and Central Securities Depository (CSD) for Germany. Through its extensive global presence, ISS has unparalleled experience in the process of acquiring, analyzing and processing meeting information across more than 100 established and emerging markets.
Stephen Harvey, Managing Director and Head of the ISS Business, said: “Innovation and execution are ISS hallmarks so we are delighted to have delivered Clearstream’s new, enhanced proxy voting service, in advance of the 2012 proxy season. Clearstream and its customers throughout Europe will now be able to leverage ISS’ industry-leading proxy voting platform, dedicated client service and in-depth knowledge of local market voting practices.”
Clearstream customers will be able to send and/or receive information via SWIFT and/or through the ISS online system, ProxyExchange™ and will also be able to manage meetings for assets in the Clearstream securitieslending programme and vote on positions pledged as collateral as part of the CMS with Clearstream. Customer data protection is handled by multiple layers of hardware and software security in ISS’ Geneva data facility.
Global market initiatives such as the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment and recent regulatory developments such as the introduction of investor stewardship codes in various markets, highlight the important governance role of investors in exercising their active ownership rights, including voting at company meetings. The implementation of the EU Shareholder Rights Directive is working to remove the practical impediments to voting, such as shareblocking, in EU markets. This enhanced solution addresses many of the pain-points, ultimately making it easier for Clearstream’s customers to exercise their voting rights.
Phillip Brown, Member of the Executive Board and Head of Client Relations Europe & Americas and Head of Product Management at Clearstream, said: “As the focus on corporate governance intensifies globally, investors increasingly need state-of-the art asset services to support their active ownership initiatives. Our new, enhanced proxy voting solution offers customers a superior quality service across the widest possible set of securities and markets.”
ISS, founded in 1985 as Institutional Shareholder Services Inc., is the world's leading provider of proxy advisory and corporate governance solutions to financial market participants. ISS' services include objective proxy research and analysis, end-to-end proxy voting and distribution solutions, turnkey securities class-action claims management, and reliable governance data and modeling tools. More than 1,700 clients rely on ISS' expertise to help them make informed corporate governance decisions. ISS is located in financial centers worldwide and is a subsidiary of MSCI Inc., a leading provider of investment decision support tools to investors globally.
As an international central securities depository (ICSD) headquartered in Luxembourg, Clearstream provides the post-trade infrastructure for the Eurobond market and services for securities from 52 domestic markets worldwide. Clearstream’s customers comprise approximately 2,500 financial institutions in over 110 countries. Its services include the issuance, settlement and custody of securities as well as investment fund services and global securities financing. With almost €11 trillion in assets under custody, Clearstream is one of the world’s largest settlement and custody firms for domestic and international securities.
As a central securities depository (CSD) based in Frankfurt, Clearstream also provides the post-trade infrastructure for the German securities industry, offering access to a growing number of markets in Europe. Further information: www.clearstream.com
ISS Media Contact:
Cheryl Gustitus +1 301 556 0395
Sarah Ball +44 (0)207 618 2275
Clearstream Media Contact:
Nicolas Nonnenmacher +352-243-36115