What Will the Shareholder Vote at IBM Reveal?

Media Contacts: 

Andrea Ranger, aranger@greencentury.com, 781-349-2813 

Pam Podger, ppodger@greencentury.com, 802-299-9495 

Boston, April 29, 2024 – Shareholders will cast a vote on Green Century’s° shareholder proposal asking IBM* to set a stronger greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction target at its April 30 annual general meeting. 

Though IBM has committed to reducing a percentage of its overall climate emissions, it has refused to set a target that covers all of its operational and upstream and downstream emissions, also known as a science-based target. Ironically, IBM sells software designed to help its customers organize emissions data so they can set their own science-based targets.  

“Our proposal addresses a yawning gap between what IBM does and what it says,” said Green Century Funds President Leslie Samuelrich. “IBM speaks of the transformative power of science-based targets on its website, but it won’t set its own comprehensive target. Investors are right to be concerned about a company that is so oblivious to the optics.” 

IBM’s Credibility Gap 

IBM has demonstrated decades-long leadership on climate issues. As early as 1994, it began to disclose its carbon dioxide emissions. Additionally, it first purchased renewable electricity in 2001, publicly supported the Paris Agreement in 2015, and backed a bi-partisan plan for a carbon tax in 2019.  

However, the company’s recent actions undermine its credibility. Even though IBM has a target to substantially reduce its emissions by 2030, the target only covers a few categories of its emissions sources. Meanwhile, peers’ targets cover a much wider scope of emissions, including those of Hewlett Packard Enterprise*, Microsoft*, and Salesforce*.   

“I can’t think of another company that has more to gain by establishing science-based targets and implementing them,” said Green Century Shareholder Advocate Andrea Ranger. “You simply can’t maintain your leadership position in the industry, while ducking a commitment yourself. The reputational risk is breathtaking.” 

A sustainable investment strategy that incorporates environmental, social and governance criteria may result in lower or higher returns than an investment strategy that does not include such criteria. 

About Green Century 

°Green Century Capital Management, Inc. (Green Century) is the investment advisor to the Green Century Funds (The Funds). The Green Century Funds are one of the first families of fossil fuel-free, environmentally responsible mutual funds. Green Century hosts an award-winning and in-house shareholder advocacy program and is the only mutual fund company in the U.S. wholly owned by environmental and public health nonprofit organizations. 

*As of 03.31.2024, International Business Machines Corporation comprised 0.00%, 0.74%, and 0.00%, Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company comprised 0.00%, 0.10%, and 0.00%, Microsoft Corporation comprised 5.34%, 12.51%, and 0.00%, and Salesforce, Inc. comprised 1.34%, 1.24%, and 0.00% of the Green Century Balanced Fund, the Green Century Equity Fund, and the Green Century International Index Fund, respectively. As of the same date, other securities mentioned were not held in the portfolios of any of the Green Century Funds. References to specific securities, which will change due to ongoing management of the Funds, should not be construed as a recommendation by the Funds, their administrator, or their distributor. 

You should carefully consider the Fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses before investing. To obtain a Prospectus that contains this and other information about the Funds please visit www.greencentury.com, email info@greencentury.com, or call 1-800-934-7336. Please read the Prospectus carefully before investing. 

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This information has been prepared from sources believed reliable. The views expressed are as the date of this writing and are those of the Advisor to the Funds. 

The Green Century Funds are distributed by UMB Distribution Services. UMB Distribution Services, LLC is not an affiliate of Green Century or any of its affiliates. April 2024.