Engagement is of great importance for EAM‘s sustainable investment approach. It combines

own initiatives with collaboration on a national and international level. The structured

engagement process is based on the „EAM Engagement Guideline“ which determines

engagement issues, approach and procedures.


Partners and Sponsors of FIFA


Every four years the FIFA World Cup Final comes to another country, moving the masses and enriching the

companies involved. The protests of the population against the ESG infringements of both the respective host

country and FIFA leave a dubious aftertaste in the wake of the event. Critical issues are expensive buildings with

limited purposes (see also the editorial).

In Rio de Janeiro Continental supports

the education project UERE. Children

and adolescents from the urban favelas

are taught with the help of e-learning

methods and are given football


In the run-up to the World Cup Final 2014 Erste Asset Management wanted to know from partners and sponsors

how they saw the approach of FIFA and whether there was any chance to organise large sports events in a more

sustainable fashion. We contacted all partners and sponsors for the World Cup Final 2014, but a large number of

companies that we got in touch with, for example Johnson & Johnson, made it clear right from the start that they

would not comment on this issue. Extensive engagement activities were possible with Adidas, Continental, and Sony.

Only Adidas, Continental and Sony dareto enter the engagement process

The questions Erste Asset Management asked covered a broad range of items, from the rationale behind the

partnership to social projects in the World Cup countries and the chance of a more sustainable championship.

All companies wanted to use their involvement to turn football into a more popular and “accessible” sport. Only

Continental was refreshingly honest, pointing out that at the end of the day it was all about boosting the popularity

of the brand and increasing sales. The companies did not want to answer the question how they viewed the

protests, all the while referring to their internal guidelines. Adidas and Continental did not feel directly responsible

and basically regard FIFA and the government as contact to discuss the sustainability of such events. However, our

contacts at Continental also explained that they would endorse adequate (i.e. work etc) standards for companies

participating in large events.


The direct support of the country is of crucial relevance to the partners and sponsors of the World Cup Final.

Every involved company that we have spoken with tries to support the society in the host country. A large number

of social projects for children to promote sports and education have been launched.



During this engagement we have come to realise that it is important to enter into a more extensive dialogue with

all stakeholders. Therefore EAM wants to cooperate with the engagement expert GES in setting up an investor

circle. This circle will pursue periodical engagement activities that are not only based on the World Cup Final, but

on all large sporting events and their sponsors.


(Richard Boulanger)

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