Citi has teamed up with Computershare to launch an end-to-end digital proxy voting platform connecting issuers and investors for shareholder meetings.
The Proxymity platform uses a core algorithm to streamline the flow of information between intermediaries, removing inefficiencies by directly connecting the issuers to the investors.
Issuers can receive real-time confirmation of investor votes as soon as these are entered onto the platform, from the moment the shareholder meeting has been announced through to the deadline.
Investors benefit from improved voting cut-off dates, with up to nine additional days to research the meeting and cast their votes through the platform; which in addition provides post-meeting vote confirmation to investors.
The platform was developed by staffers at Citi's custody and fund services business, who took advantage of the bank's new D10X programme, which lets employees pitch and develop business ideas. Computershare is providing registry services support.
Proxymity is initially being used in the UK, where it has already supported 17 shareholder meetings and is on track to back 200 this year.
Carola van Lamoen, head of active ownership at Proxymity user Robeco, says: "Enhancing transparency and efficiency in the proxy voting chain is of utmost importance to ensure high quality and accuracy of our voting activities.
"Proxymity’s ability to verify the votes cast at shareholder meetings improves the effectiveness of our voting activities and allows real-time engagement between issuers and investors."