Update: Activism in Japan

Chris Taylor, EVP, Global Research, Thought Leadership & Partnerships, is back with a quick follow-up to his April 8th blog post regarding the need for local Japanese investors to stand up and be heard for activism to truly take hold in Japan.

The reticence to date of Japanese investors to critically engage with companies comes through loud and clear in the following quote from GPIF’s Mr. Mizuno (emphasis ours).

Please follow the link to the full story. While we aren’t convinced the relationship has legs, the fact that GPIF is even considering to utilize CalSTRS as an activist mentor, so to speak, is progress.

From Pensions & Investments:

Mr. Mizuno said an increased effort is necessary in Japan. He said the pension fund’s own passive equity managers need to challenge corporations over their governance practices but have refused, saying they are not paid enough by the Tokyo-based Japanese pension fund.

Mr. Mizuno said he has told the managers he will pay them more to start engaging companies on corporate governance. “As passive managers, we expect them to do more,” Mr. Mizuno said. He said he would like the asset managers to “aggressively passively manage.”

Read the full article.