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April 2019

Ninth meeting of AXA Stakeholder Advisory Panel

Starting time: 12:30 PM CEST

Ending time: April 26, 2019 12:30 PM CEST

AXA held the ninth meeting of its Stakeholder Advisory Panel on April 25 & 26, 2019 in Paris.

Attendees :

  • External panelists: Steve Davis, Sangu Delle, Nicholas Eberstadt, Ameera Shah and Mark Tercek
  • Members of AXA’s Board: Denis Duverne (Chairman of the AXA Board)
  • AXA management: George Stansfield (Deputy CEO and Group General Secretary), Jacques de Peretti (AXA France CEO), Ulrike Decoene (Group Head of Communication, Brand and Corporate Responsibility), Céline Soubranne (Group Head of Corporate Responsibility) and Nicolas Pfohl (Executive Assistant to Group Head of Public Affairs and Corporate Responsibility)

Panelists have been invited to share their insights and comments regarding specific initiatives: AXA XL Ocean Risk Initiative, Responsible data, Responsible Investment and the “Future of inequalities and social cohesion”.

1. Ocean Risk Initiative

Expanding on the panel’s last session dedicated to biodiversity, the AXA XL “Ocean risk initiative” was discussed, notably (a) the development of an “Ocean risk index”; (b) a new carbon offset tool: the “blue carbon credit”; (c) an insurance product for mangroves and (d) an educational program for children and students.  

2. Responsible Data

Ensuring the most appropriate ways to make responsible use of data were debated along two axes. The first being how AXA can be a trusted data steward for its customers, especially by leveraging the Data Protection and Ethics Panel. Secondly, how AXA data could continue to be leveraged to contribute to the common good and make a strong impact beyond the initial “Give data back" initiative, especially at entity level. 

3. Responsible Investment

First, the panel reviewed and validated the alignment between AXA global Corporate Responsibility Strategy and the UN Sustainable Development Goals; focusing on its direct contribution to 7 of them*.

The panel also validated the two guiding principles of AXA’s updated “Responsible Investment (RI) policy”:

  • AXA wants to become the investor enabling the transition to a more sustainable society;
  • The AXA RI policy should reflect its contributions to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals

As an asset owner, AXA is encouraged to continue to explore a “climate metric” reflecting its contribution to the Paris Agreement. In parallel, the panelists insisted that AXA should carry on with its training and outreaching efforts to promote “climate literacy” among AXA’s teams and generally in the financial sectors.

As to Asset Management, the panel validated both AXA IM impact investing and shareholder engagement strategies. Regarding shareholder engagement, the panel appreciated that, even if centrally driven by the Responsible investment team, the dialogue with companies was implemented by the regular investor teams.

4. Future of inequalities and social cohesion

The panel acknowledged this subject’s relevance and appreciated the paper’s comprehensive and exploratory approach. It suggested this initial analysis needed to be followed-up by additional investigations to identify and focus on areas and segments of population for which AXA could have the strongest impact and be aligned with its key business priorities. The panel has encouraged AXA to prioritize immediate actions along the following criteria: catalytic impact, scalability, profitability (especially to avoid any loss).

*Priority “Climate Change and Environment” directly contributes to SDGs #13 “Climate Action”, #14 “Life below water” and #15 “Life on Land”; Priority “Health and Prevention” to #3 “Good Health and Well-Being” and Priority “Social Inequality and Inclusion” to #1 “No Poverty”, #5 “Gender Equality” and #10 “Reduced Inequalities”.