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War Profiteer of the Month: AXA

AXA Financial Protection is a French financial group, that offers to their customers - individuals as well as small, mid-size and large businesses – a wide range of product and services that include insurance, protection, savings, retirement and financial planning.

They provide a variety of services:

AXA Assistance:

An international network of assistance and services for Corporate and individual clients.

AXA Assistance is present in more than 30 countries, on 5 continents. It has a workforce of 3,600 people worldwide.

AXA Corporate Solutions:

AXA Corporate Solutions is the AXA Group subsidiary that provides property-casualty insurance to large European corporations and marine and aviation insurance to corporate clients worldwide. In 2004, AXA Corporate Solutions generated revenues of 1.6 billion euros and it is resent in more than 80 countries.

Maxis

Through the wider organizations of AXA and MetLife, MAXIS provides multinational companies with international employee benefit solutions. MAXIS is present in over 65 countries with more than 70 member companies

AXA in their website declares that they are “Aware and proud of our industry's contribution to the economic and social development of the community, we seek to do business responsibly by living up to consistent values and stakeholder commitments throughout the world”

Here are some ways AXA is “developing the community”:

A 2006 report by Netwerk Vlaanderen in Belgium on banks groups investing in cluster munitions, showed that AXA invests more than US$ 5.5 billion in all 13 researched companies producers of cluster munition. This includes big arms trade: ATK, BAE Systems, EADS, Lockheed Martin, Thales, Raytheon, Textron, Thales to name some of the 13.

In a new report in February 2007 from Netwerk Vlaanderen called “Explosive Investment Financial Institutions and Cluster Munitions” it was presented that by September 2006 AXA had 7.55 % of the shares of Textron. Textron is an US company that produces the CBU – 105 Sensor Fused Weapon, a cluster bomb, for the US airforce, which was first used in 2003 during the Iraq war. Other arms traders that they have major investments are BAE Systems with 8,62 % and Northrop Grumman with 4,36 % at the year 2006. Both are on the list of the 10 biggest arms producers in the world.

As the Explosive Investment report says: “ Bank, insurance companies... play a crucial role in allocating financial resource. As a large majority of companies and governments in the world are dependent on the financial markets and these financial institutions to find the capital needed to operate...Unfortunately financial institutions are generally taking investments decision based solely on profit maximising criteria. Most of the time the impact of these investments on human rights, armed conflict or environmental destruction are not taken into account...This combination of a huge leverage power and a lack of social responsibility is a dangerous cocktail posing a serious threat to the sustainable development of our planet”.

For more information:

www.netwerkvlaanderen.be

www.axa.com