By Cristina Roca
Danone SA said Wednesday that it will place greater focus on its ESG goals, and confirmed its 2019 dividend despite the coronavirus pandemic.
The French food-and-drink company is adopting the French "Entreprise a Mission" legal framework, and setting up an independent committee to oversee and report on its progress on its environmental, social and societal goals.
"This move [responds to] a wake up call from a crisis that we believe is going to be long," Danone Chairman and Chief Executive Emmanuel Faber said in a call with media.
The adoption of the framework will be proposed at Danone's AGM, which was scheduled for June 26.
Danone confirmed that it will propose a dividend of 2.10 euros ($2.30) a share. Despite the coronavirus crisis which has led many companies to cut or scrap their dividends for the year, Danone said it wanted to reward its shareholders.
Mr. Faber will take a 30% cut to his fixed pay for the rest of 2020 starting on July 1. Danone's board of directors will give up their entire pay for the second half of 2020 and will allocate it to Danone's employee health-coverage program.