Shareholders attempt to influence company standards but none are as big as Norway’s oil fund, the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, which has a new focus on governance.
Calm waters: Statoil's "Troll A" oil platform in Norwegian waters. Photo: Troll A, Oil Platform, Norway by Harald Pettersen for Statoil.
At a value of £563bn ($880bn) Norway’s state oil fund is a leviathan of sovereign wealth funds, with a reported average shareholding of 1.3% in every listed company in the world.
The minority stakes would seem to indicate little interest in how companies behave, but under the leadership of chief executive Yngve Slyngstad, that is changing, with the fund now beginning to take a more active interest in corporate governance.
Indeed, its activity could be turning it into a leviathan of governance too. A speech from Slyngstad outlines the fund’s intentions: more involvement in governance, closer contact with boards, more involvement in
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