Investor Communications Japan (ICJ) reveals the number of share-issuing companies on its electronic proxy voting platform has soared, enhancing communication between Japanese issuers and global investors.
ICJ was established as a joint company for administration of ‘a voting right electronic use platform for institutional investors’ by Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) and fintech Broadridge Financial Solutions.
It digitises the processes of general shareholders meetings to streamline operations and contribute to the competitiveness of Japan’s capital markets. It helps listed companies engage constructively with institutional investors by providing the opportunity for well-informed engagement before, during, and after shareholder meetings.
Providing electronic proxy voting platform services for Japanese issuers and global institutional investors, the platform has attracted 1,738 Japanese issuers, six transfer agents, three master trusts banks, six subcustody banks, 17 global custody banks and about 4,500 institutional investors worldwide. Since June 2021, the platform has seen an increase of 499 companies.
Companies listed on the Prime Market of the TSE participate in the platform, representing 87 per cent of the companies in that market or 98 per cent by market capitalisation. Furthermore, more than 100 companies listed on the Standard Market and over 20 companies listed on the Growth Market participate in the ICJ.
Shigeo Imakiire, president of ICJ, says: “Increasing numbers of listed companies and institutional investors are seeking to ensure sufficient time to exercise voting rights based on constructive dialogue and the platform better enables this process. 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.”
“ICJ will continue working to strengthen the competitiveness of Japan’s capital markets and advance corporate governance through the digitalisation of general shareholder meeting processes. ICJ aims to support effective dialogue between companies and investors, and the realisation of greater operational efficiency and provision of valuable services for general shareholder meeting participants.”
ICJ is part of Broadridge’s local market commitments to enhance corporate governance and increase shareholder democracy at a national level in markets around the world.
The fintech’s infrastructure serves as a global communications hub, enabling higher standards of corporate governance and investor stewardship by linking 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 modernise the industry,” adds Demi Derem, managing director of international investor communication solutions at Broadridge.
“Through our collaboration in the Japan market, we enable greater issuer and shareholder participation, market wide transparency, and set the standard for proxy communications and voting.”