CSR at Axcel
Sustainability is a consideration whenever Axcel makes an investment. These days it is essential for the success of an investment that the owner is aware of CSR issues and actively addresses them.
Axcel joined the UN Global Compact in 2010 and has worked strategically with CSR ever since. In 2016, Axcel submitted its first report under the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).
All portfolio companies are required to join the Global Compact within one year and work on continuous improvement against its ten principles. This work forms an integrated part of Axcel’s active ownership, and each year companies are to prepare a Communication on Progress (COP) for publication on the Global Compact website.
Axcel views CSR as an integral part of its work on risk at portfolio companies. It is therefore natural for Axcel to integrate CSR fully into its investment processes and ownership activities during the holding period.
Axcel invests only in companies that comply with, or are ready to comply with, the Global Compact principles. Companies’ ability and willingness to work on the basis of the principles is therefore also part of Axcel’s due diligence when acquiring new companies.
While the Global Compact focuses on CSR at company level, the PRI look at environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues at fund level. By signing up to both schemes, Axcel has the best possible basis for creating a framework for CSR reporting that is familiar to both companies and investors.
Axcel’s goal is continuous improvement in its companies’ CSR performance. This is a demanding process to which companies need to commit both time and resources. Axcel therefore engages actively with its companies on progress in their CSR work through regular meetings with a group of CSR officers and direct dialogue with the companies.
Axcel encourages its companies to:
- comply with relevant laws, rules and internationally recognised principles
- consider risks relating to CSR issues and address them proactively
- be in a position to meet the requirements and expectations of customers and business partners concerning supply chain management and codes of conduct
- consider future business opportunities and positioning in relation to CSR
- comply with the DVCA guidelines on openness and transparency
Most of Axcel’s companies have submitted at least one COP, and the rest are on track to do so. Axcel regularly makes suggestions for improvements, but it is crucial that the companies themselves take ultimate responsibility for their CSR work.
Active ownership is also about our companies being run in accordance with the demands and expectations of the world around us and about us acting as good corporate citizens. For this reason we at Axcel have endorsed the UN Global Compact, and expect our companies to do the same
Axcel’s approach to CSR
Axcel has signed up to both the PRI and the Global Compact at fund level. At company level, all portfolio companies have signed up to the Global Compact, which ensures real improvements in ESG performance and risk management.
Axcel has a whistleblower system to ensure our employees have the oppotunity to anonymously report any illegal or unethical behavior.