Shareholder relations

Report Jan. 5, 2021

Shareholder relations


ExxonMobil has a duty to our shareholders to create long-term value while seeking to meet the world’s growing energy needs. Responsible engagement with our shareholders provides an effective forum to address issues and share relevant information, facts and viewpoints. The board has established procedures for shareholders and other interested parties to communicate with board members. Individuals can email our non-employee directors through the corporate governance page of our website. ExxonMobil employees work with directors to respond to letters and emails. Directors will sometimes request that senior managers meet with shareholders to address particular topics.

Every year, shareholders or their proxies submit proposals regarding company operations or corporate governance. Company management and the board consider the proposals, and management typically seeks a dialogue with the proposal sponsor. If the dialogue successfully addresses the shareholder’s concerns identified in the proposal, the proposal is often withdrawn. When discussing with shareholders, we seek to listen actively to their concerns to find common ground, potential for improvement and a better understanding of the issues raised. Visit ExxonMobil’s proxy statement for additional information. 

2019 performance and initiatives

ExxonMobil engages with shareholders or their proxies on a range of environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues. In 2019, we held approximately 85 shareholder engagements on ESG issues with institutional investors, pension funds, and labor, religious and nongovernmental organizations. These engagements reached shareholders owning nearly 1.4 billion shares. The number of such shareholder engagements in 2019 has more than doubled since 2014. Participants represented an estimated 58 percent of outstanding stock held by institutional investors and about 34 percent of total shares outstanding. These shareholder engagements can often eliminate the need for more formal shareholder proposals at the annual shareholders meeting. 

At the corporation’s 2019 annual meeting, shareholders owning approximately 3.6 billion outstanding shares—or approximately 86 percent— were represented. In 2019, shareholders voted on 10 issues, including seven shareholder proposals. The summary table below shows the results.

2019 Proxy vote summary

Proxy item Vote for1
 1. Election of directors (average)2  >93%
 2. Ratification of independent auditors2  96.8%
 3. Advisory vote on executive compensation2  91.6%
 4. Independent chairman   40.7%
 5. Special shareholder meetings  42.4%
 6. Board matrix  29.8%
 7. Climate change board committee3  7.4%
 8. Report on risks of gulf coast petrochemical investments3  25.0%
 9. Report on political contributions  26.1%
 10. Report on lobbying  37.3%
1Abstentions count for quorum purposes, but not toward voting on these proposals.
2Proposals submitted by the board.
3First-year proposal.

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