Japanese investor communication platform success leads to better governance

Japanese investor communication platform success leads to better governance
Japanese investor communication platform success leads to better governance

Investor Communications Japan (ICJ) reveals that the number of stock-issuing companies on its electronic proxy voting platform has increased, improving communication between Japanese issuers and global investors.

ICJ was established as a joint company for the management of “a voting electronic usage platform for institutional investors” by Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) and fintech Broadridge Financial Solutions.

It digitizes the processes of general meetings to streamline operations and contribute to the competitiveness of Japan’s capital markets. It helps listed companies engage constructively with institutional investors by enabling well-informed engagement before, during and after shareholder meetings.

Platform growth

The platform provides electronic proxy voting platform services for Japanese issuers and global institutional investors, and has attracted 1,738 Japanese issuers, six transfer agents, three master trust banks, six sub-custodian banks, 17 global custodian banks and around 4,500 institutional investors worldwide. Since June 2021, the platform has seen an increase of 499 companies.

Companies listed on TSE’s main market participate in the platform, and represent 87 per cent of the companies in that market or 98 per cent by market value. Furthermore, more than 100 companies listed on the Standard Market and over 20 companies listed on the Growth Market participate in ICJ.

Shigeo Imakiire, president of ICJ, says: “Increasing numbers of listed companies and institutional investors are seeking to secure sufficient time to exercise voting rights based on constructive dialogue, and the platform enables this process better. This increase in companies joining the platform is proof that the voting environment has dramatically improved to facilitate the objectives of Japan’s Corporate Governance and Stewardship Codes.”

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“The ICJ will continue its work to strengthen the competitiveness of Japan’s capital markets and promote corporate governance through the digitization of general meeting processes. ICJ aims to support effective dialogue between companies and investors, and the realization of greater operational efficiency and the provision of valuable services for general meeting participants.”

Broadridge response

The ICJ is part of Broadridge’s local market commitments to improve corporate governance and increase shareholder democracy at the national level in markets around the world.

Fintech’s infrastructure acts as a global communications hub, enabling higher standards of corporate governance and investor stewardship by connecting thousands of public companies and mutual funds to tens of millions of individual and institutional investors around the world.

“Broadridge is proud to support the ongoing growth of electronic proxy voting in Japan, by providing innovative digital technology solutions to benefit issuers and investors and help modernize the industry,” adds. Demi Deremmanaging director of international investor communications solutions at Broadridge.

“Through our cooperation in the Japanese market, we enable greater participation by issuers and shareholders, transparency throughout the market and set the standard for proxy communication and voting.”

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