NYC Public Pension Funds to Suggest Specific Board Candidates to Individual Companies in its Portfolio, says it has “firepower to do that.”
As the article points out, New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer. as investment advisor to, custodian and trustee of the NYC’s five pension funds, has led the shareholder charge on proxy access bylaws by sponsoring hundreds of shareholder proposals at its portfolio companies. While the pension funds have not actually threatened proxy access nominations, they will begin to start suggesting specific board candidates now, most likely at underperforming companies in their portfolio that already have adopted proxy access bylaws. This is a significant step.
While the threat a nomination will provide a reputable nominator some leverage, only with support from the broader shareholder base will their efforts ultimately succeed. Companies with proxy access bylaws now have another reason to engage their shareholders to understand their perspectives on the company and its performance and governance.