Shareholder Advisory Firm
We monitor investor behavior and preferences to support companies’ decision-making processes that require shareholders'​ input.

We support companies to proactively manage their shareholder relationships, reduce risk of being caught off guard by an activist, and help gain shareholder support for an integrated "Equity Story" that builds on its "Governance" strengths and focus on material "Environmental" and "Social" issues.
Activists GO BIG
SquareWell analyzed activist campaigns at the largest companies since 2019. The review focuses on those campaigns that escalated to challenge management proposals or the submission of shareholder proposals.

Campaigns typically have varied rationales that manifest themselves into one or many demands; however, we see activists focusing on two broad themes: (i) influencing future decision-making by altering board dynamics, or (ii) opposing strategic decisions made.

The Playing Field
SquareWell publishes its third annual study reviewing how 50 of the world’s largest asset managers are evaluating sustainability issues and stewarding their portfolios.

Investing responsibly, once niche, is now the norm, with asset managers increasingly advertising their “ESG” credentials. Whilst they are claiming such “ESG” credentials, in reality there is a lack of standardised benchmarks with which to accurately measure their legitimacy.


Increased stewardship activity leads to greater accountability

Increased stewardship activity leads to greater accountability

Evolving regulatory requirements and the pressure to deliver sustained returns in an extremely competitive environment has led investors to increasingly monitor extra-financial factors alongside financial performance.

The integration of “Environmental” and “Social” issues, on top of “Governance” issues, in investment decisions has moved from a ‘nice to have’ to a basic requirement for many asset owners. Asset managers are now held accountable by their clients to evidence how they use extra-financial identify opportunities, manage risks and have an impact. Moreover, for investors, stewardship is no longer just about voting. It means monitoring and engaging with companies on issues ranging from capital allocation to climate change.

For companies, on the otherhand, the challenge is to understand how each investor exercises their rights and responsibilities which are not yet homogenous. Boards and management teams are now under constant pressure to demonstrate how their strategic decisions aim to create value for stakeholders while reducing their negative externalities. Failure to effectively communicate the long-term impact of those decisions makes a company more vulnerable to threats posed by investors, competitors, and other market participants.

Our Approach

Irrespective of a company’s ownership structure, we are involved when director and management accountability is in focus.

We support our clients’ decision-making processes throughout the year, by monitoring shareholder behavior and preferences, and by anticipating emerging trends in “Governance” as well as “Environmental” and “Social” practices and disclosures.

Our work begins with understanding our clients and their relationship with their investors. We conduct an in-depth review of each client’s strengths and any challenges it faces with respect to the responsibility it has to its shareholders. This diagnostic exercise alerts our clients to what matters to their investors.

SquareWell seeks to recreate the public squares of the past, enabling companies and shareholders to gain an unfiltered understanding of each other in neutral territory, which helps establish goodwill and trust. Our clients are supported with developing a narrative with impact, and enter fully prepared into a meaningful dialogue with their shareholders.


As a leading shareholder advisory firm, our ability to analyze and interpret market feedback, supported by our proprietary knowledge management tool, allows us to provide investor-focused advice, grounded on precedent. This, in turn, helps maximize investor support in high-stake votes and avoids contested situations.

The Progress Group

Driving progress by sharing knowledge and experience with the market.

We believe that all stakeholders in the financial market can drive progress and positive change. In particular, we think that when diverse stakeholders participate in thoughtful discussion and debate, great ideas are generated. That is why we consider it imperative that stakeholders have opportunities to come together, discuss issues, and share their knowledge and experience with the market.

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