Finnish companies continue to stand out in Investor Relations and Governance
In this year's Webranking edition, the Finnish companies continue to perform very well and have once again received the highest average score of all ranked countries. They perform particularly well in Investor Relations, where other European companies struggle to provide sufficient information.
When summarising the Finnish results we notice the following:
Finnish companies really stand out when it comes to providing Investor Relations information, especially investment propositions and predictions of how megatrends will affect them.
As always, the companies provide impressive governance information, showing a very high level of transparency to their different stakeholder groups.
Many companies are good at presenting information about their remuneration policy as well as who their insiders are.
An area of improvement is to provide more Careers information, especially about compensation and benefits.
Investor Relations one of the strengths
An area where Finnish companies really stand out in their performance is in presenting Investor Relations information on their corporate websites. This stands in contrast to most other countries where Investor Relations is the biggest challenge for the companies. The average score for Finnish companies is 53% which compares with the European average of 25%.
The companies are especially good at providing investment propositions, clearly motivating why someone should invest in their company. As many as 83% of the ranked Finnish companies present this, while only 34% of the European companies present it. The main objective of an investment proposition is to convince potential investors that investing in your company will provide more value than investing in other similar companies.
The investor proposition should include how it would create monetary value but could also include other aspects, such as sustainability. Including sustainability aspects in the investment proposition is especially important for the growing number of ESG investors.
The biggest megatrends are, according to PwC urbanisation, climate change and resource scarcity, shift in global economic power, demographic and social change and technological breakthroughs. The trends are affecting most companies in one way or the other, and the impact is not predicted to decrease. The potential for change is also a key driver for investment decision-making. Because of this, it is important to explain to investors and other target groups how you predict each megatrend will affect your company.
Finnish companies continue to present outstanding governance sections, showing a very high level of transparency. On average, the companies fulfil 77% of the criteria (compared with the European average of 44%). As the expectations on transparency are increasing for all stakeholder groups, it is good to see Finnish companies taking the lead.
The performance stands out when it comes to informing about the remuneration paid to the management. A summary of the remuneration policy should be presented directly on your corporate website, and the actual numbers paid could be presented in a complementary PDF report. To be open about the remuneration paid shows a high level of transparency. 53% of the ranked companies provide a summary of the remuneration policy, compared with the European average of 17%.
Another area where Finnish companies show great transparency is by informing about who their insiders are and showing their latest transactions with the share. Insiders have the most up-to-date information about the performance of your company's shares, and investors want updated information about if they have bought or sold their shares recently. As many as 90% of the companies provide information about who their insiders are (names, roles within the company etc.) and 49% present a list of their latest transactions.
Careers still one of the challenges
One of the weaker performing areas for Finnish companies is Careers. Still, they perform almost on the same level as the European companies. The Finnish companies have received an average score of 40% compared with the European average of 42%.
The Finnish companies often miss to include an explanation of their compensation policy to jobseekers, only a fifth of the ranked companies present this (22%). As jobseeker expectations on what the companies can provide in terms of compensation and benefits are increasing, Finnish companies need to become better at presenting this.
Employees naturally desire reassurance that they are being paid properly and that their contributions are being acknowledged. They also want to know about other kinds of benefits such as flexible working hours, working from home and insurance.
Of course, compensation and benefits vary from role to role, but companies usually have a general approach that should be communicated. Compensation is also an important part of a successful employee value proposition.
This year, we see the same Finnish top performers as last year, Valmet, Fortum and Kesko. However, the competition is tough since it only differs by 0.4 points between Kesko (number three) and Valmet (number one).
Valmet have improved their score by 4.2 points and have thus strengthened their position as the Finnish top performer further. Their website offers impressive Governance and Investor Relations information.
Kesko have slightly dipped in score but still remain in third place. Like their Finnish peers, they offer a detailed Investor Relations section. They also present useful information for journalists in their media section.
Raisio are the Finnish company that have improved their score the most since last year. It has improved by 9.2 points. Well done!