ESG

City of London Investment Group plc (CLIG) strives to maintain high levels of transparency and ethical standards in the conduct of our business on behalf of shareholders, clients, and employees. CLIG maintains detailed policies to achieve this objective, which are overseen by the Group Board.

Environmental

City of London Investment Group believes that it has a responsibility to care for and protect the environment in which we operate. While CLIG’s activities have a relatively modest direct environmental impact, we recognise that society’s collective challenge to minimise environmental risks necessitates a proactive stance to measure and, wherever commercially possible, improve the overall environmental performance. Of course, an additional benefit to these solutions is a reduction in costs due to decreased usage of energy and materials, which we are happy to pass on to shareholders. We have complied with the requirements of LR 9.8.6 during the financial year ended 30th June 2022, and our Annual Report & Accounts explain how we applied the 11 principles of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (“TCFD”) recommendations.

  • We maximise the use of video-conferencing facilities, which exist in all office locations and which serve to limit inter-office air travel by employees.
  • Listed companies are required to report their annual greenhouse gas emissions. We have used the financial control approach and utilised the UK Government’s GHG Conversion Factors for Company Reporting. For international electricity conversion factors this year we have used the US EPA (eGrid) and Singapore EMA for the first time and so have restated our prior year emissions for overseas offices for comparative purposes.

  • We utilise electronic media across the Group in place of paper reports.
  • Our ‘everyday paper’ across the Group is exclusively paper certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.
  • Where possible, we have reduced the volume of hard copy material that is required to be retained and stored for record-keeping purposes.

  • We shred and recycle all confidential waste.
  • We recycle paper, plastic, cardboard, glass and printer toner cartridges.

  • In 2015, all existing light bulbs in the US East Coast office of our wholly-owned subsidiary company, City of London Investment Management Company Limited, were replaced with LED bulbs.

Social

City of London Investment Group recognises that it has responsibilities with respect to both the welfare and development of the group as well as the improvement of the communities in which all group offices are located.

In addition to the statutory obligations which apply to the Group’s activities in each of its locations, CLIG is committed to maintaining transparent policies in respect of the following:

  • Recognition of diversity through recruitment and promotion based on merit without regard to ethnicity, gender, religion, sexual orientation, disability, family or marital status, language, national origin, political affiliation, race, age, or any other characteristic protected by law.
  • Strict adherence to and compliance with the regulatory requirements in force by all employees supported by clear guidelines that enable whistleblowing.
  • Participation by employees in the Group’s activities through share ownership arrangements that encourage employee retention and minimise turnover.
  • Ensuring good practices and creating a workplace free of harassment and bullying and in which all individuals are treated with dignity and respect.

Gender Diversity

As an employer, CLIG is committed to equality and valuing diversity within its workforce. As noted above, we believe that people should be appointed to their roles based on skills, merit and performance. We recognise that diversity adds value, but do not consider setting targets as appropriate in this regard. Our goal is to ensure that our commitments, reinforced by our values, are embedded in our day-to-day working practices. A Diversity Working Group was established in 2020, with membership including two Executive Directors, responsible for reporting on, or assisting in the implementation of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion-related initiatives.

Post restructure of the Board on 30th June 2022 and after the retirement of Barry Olliff on 31st July 2022, the gender ratio at Board level as at 31st July 2022 was 29% female to 71% male (30th June 2021: 18% to 82%).

Of our 111 employees, excluding Non-Executive Directors, 37% are female (2021: 36%), including 33% of senior management including Executive Directors (2021: 31%), and 38% of the remaining employees (2021: 37%).

Work/Life Balance

As the Group continues to adapt with advancements in technology, changes in culture, and the changing family circumstances of our employees, we try to be fair and flexible while retaining teamwork as one of our core values. CLIG employees faced another challenging year and our priority continued to be ensuring their safety and well-being. Accordingly, during FY 2022, employees were provided flexibility to work from home (WFH) up to a certain number of days.

Our management team and the Board continued to engage ensuring open discussion with the wider workforce and implemented a new hybrid WFH policy with effect from 1st July 2022. We believe this better achieves the necessary balance of employee flexibility with respect to work/life balance whilst maintaining the benefits of employees working together in the office.

Human Rights

CLIG is committed to respecting all human rights. Our operations and practices relevant to the workplace and community are aligned with the United Nations (UN) Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Learning and Development

Our employees are an asset to us. We recognise and support the importance of encouraging all employees to complete professional qualifications relevant to their role, in order to progress and realise their full potential. We partner with our employees and contribute towards their development by sponsoring their studies and providing study leave. This year we have sponsored employees for their CFA studies. This is in addition to the usual seminars and conferences our employees attend. Mandatory anti-money laundering and Code of Ethics training is provided annually to all employees. Employees also take responsibility for their own development via our annual appraisal process, where they are able to discuss further training where they feel it is necessary.

We continue with the CLIG Security Education Programme (CSEP), which is a multi-faceted cyber security training programme that includes online courses and videos via a web-based portal. We have further increased the use of this web-based portal to disseminate a number of training modules including in relation to diversity, equity and inclusion as noted below.

In addition, the following training sessions are provided to all employees:

  • Internal training on our investment management services.
  • Awareness sessions on a regular basis to keep employees up to date with relevant aspects of the business.
  • Induction programme to all new employees over a period of several weeks. It is an ongoing process to ensure new employees settle well into the Group and are confident in carrying out the full scope of their duties.

Group wide policies have been established on a range of social issues, including Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Anti-Slavery & Human Trafficking, Anti-Corruption & Bribery and Whistleblowing.

CLIG’s Diversity Working Group which includes Executive Directors and other employees (including HR) is responsible for:

  • Reporting and assisting in the implementation of diversity, equity & inclusion-related initiatives.
  • Researching best practices, discussing issues raised by employees and implementing solutions across the Group.
  • Reiterating with external recruitment firms the importance of receiving a diverse pool of candidates.
  • Identifying training needs for employees and distributing them via a web-based portal. Specific trainings provided during the year included UK Equality Act 2010 and a wide-ranging review of the terms ‘Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion’.

CLIG seeks to encourage employees to regularly participate in community support activities across a wide spectrum of causes that encompass both monetary and non-monetary efforts to help raise awareness. In turn, this fosters a culture of leadership, teamwork and appreciation within our Group and community. Our long-term goals include:

  • Encouraging employee volunteer work in community activities.
  • Engaging in programmes that make communities better places to live and work.
  • Using local suppliers to help support businesses within the community.
  • Raising awareness, sharing efforts and encouraging participation via COLeague news, our internal newsletter.


During FY 2022, CLIG has partnered with at least three vendors that are female-led, which provide services across a variety of sectors including document production, website design and company secretarial services. We chose these companies because they offer best-in-class services and products. We are also aware of the benefit of diversity of thought and leadership provided by female-led companies, and will continue to include the gender and ethnic characteristics of the leadership teams in the consideration process for any vendors we look to partner with.

Illustrative list of employees’ participation in FY 2022 include:

  • DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal (UK) & United Ukrainian American Relief Committee (US).
  • The Elephant Reintegration Trust (UK).
  • One Warm Coat (US).
  • Food Bank donations to support underprivileged families and local shelters in the local communities (US & UK).
  • Salvation Army, a “Socktober” event, and Community, Youth and Women’s Alliance gift giving and donations (US & Singapore).
  • Various athletic achievements and fundraisers to support various causes (US & UK).

As a matter of policy, CLIG does not make donations to any client-related charity, event or activity, or to any political party or candidate.

Governance

City of London Investment Group endeavours to conduct its business according to the highest governance standards, providing shareholders with as much transparency and accountability as possible. The June 2022 Annual Report and Accounts reflects disclosures required under the 2018 UK Corporate Governance Code, including reporting obligations driven by Section 172 of the 2006 Companies Act.

We are pleased to announce a refreshed CLIG website for our shareholders.

Our goals were to improve the navigation within the website for our shareholders and other stakeholders that rely on the website for information. If you have any questions, please utilize the Contact Us button. Thank you for your support of CLIG.
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