Friends Fiduciary seeks shareholder support for its lobbying proposal at Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc.

April 29, 2021

As part of FFC’s robust shareholder engagement with companies about issues of concerns to Quakers, Friends Fiduciary filed a shareholder proposal with Vertex on lobbying transparency. In a letter to shareholders, FFC explains our concerns and the rationale for supporting the proposal at Vertex. The letter is called an exempt solicitation and is an important part of the shareholder resolution process and a means to communicate our concerns and the business case in support of our proposal.

The institutional proxy services – ISS and Glass Lewis – both recommended support for the proposal. Here is their analysis.

Following the filing of the exempt solicitation FFC came to an agreement with Vertex before the company’s annual meeting on May 19th, resulting in the proposal not being voted on. Vertex committed to further disclosures on lobbying, specifically payments to 501(c)(4) social welfare groups. Through engagement FFC has assisted Vertex in creating a more robust policy on lobbying, providing greater company transparency and accountability.