Kao Corporation has been selected for inclusion in the 2020 Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI World) and Dow Jones Sustainability Asia Pacific Index (DJSI Asia Pacific), among the world's most renowned socially responsible investment (SRI) indices. This is the seventh year in a row that Kao has been named to the indices.
The Dow Jones Sustainability Indices are offered cooperatively by S&P Dow Jones Indices in the United States and SAM in Switzerland to evaluate the sustainability of the world's leading companies with regards to key areas such as environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria. This year, 3,467 major companies were evaluated, and 318 companies were named to DJSI World. Kao received high evaluation for its efforts related to the criteria of Code of Business Conduct, Innovation Management, Product Quality and Recall Management, and Strategy for Emerging Market in the economic category, which also covers governance. Kao's engagement with Environmental Reporting, Climate Strategy, and Packaging was lauded in the environmental category, while its commitment to Social Reporting, Corporate Citizenship and Philanthropy was highly evaluated in the social category.
The Kao Group established its ESG strategy, the Kirei Lifestyle Plan, in April 2019. Dave Muenz, executive officer for Kao's ESG, comments, "Our inclusion in both the DJSI World and Asia Pacific once again this year is a great honor. As a company that strives to offer a Kirei Lifestyle to all—a gentle, more sustainable way of life that more and more people are seeking—this recognition will help us drive our efforts even further in integrating ESG into the core of everything we do, from product design to how we continue to conduct ourselves with the highest levels of integrity to ensure that we are a valued partner to our stakeholders around the world."
Kao has also been included in the FTSE Blossom Japan Index and the MSCI Japan ESG Select Leaders Index, both of which are used by the Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) of Japan for ESG investing, for four consecutive years, and in the MSCI Japan Empowering Women Index (WIN), which is also used by the GPIF, for three consecutive years. Kao has also been selected for inclusion in the S&P/JPX Carbon Efficient Index, which means that, this year, Kao has once again been included in all of the ESG indices* that apply to Japanese companies and that have been selected for use by the GPIF. In addition, Kao has been selected for inclusion in the FTSE4Good Index Series for the 13th consecutive year, and in the MSCI ESG Leaders Indexes for the fourth consecutive year.
*FTSE Blossom Japan Index, MSCI Japan ESG Select Leaders Index, MSCI Japan Empowering Women Index (WIN), S&P/JPX Carbon Efficient Index