Independent Assurance Provider’s limited assurance report on selected sustainability information

To the directors of Standard Bank Group Limited

We have undertaken a limited assurance engagement on selected sustainability information, as described below, and presented in the 2015 Report to Society of Standard Bank Group Limited (Standard Bank) for the year ended 31 December 2015 (the Report). This engagement was conducted by a multidisciplinary team including social, environmental, carbon and assurance specialists with relevant experience in sustainability reporting.

Subject matter

We are required to provide limited assurance on the following selected sustainability information marked with a ‘✓’ in the relevant sections in the Report, prepared in accordance with Standard Bank’s internally developed guidelines.

Table 1: Scope of the 2015 limited assurance engagement


Directors’ responsibilities

The directors are responsible for the selection, preparation and presentation of the selected sustainability information through:

  • Ensuring that the selected sustainability information is presented in accordance with Standard Bank’s internally developed guidelines;
  • Confirming the measurement or evaluation of the selected sustainability information against Standard Bank’s internally developed guidelines, including that all relevant matters are reflected in the selected sustainability information;
  • Designing, establishing and maintaining internal controls to ensure that the Report is free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error; and
  • Identification of stakeholders and stakeholder requirements, material matters and commitments with respect to sustainability performance.

Our independence and quality control

We have complied with the independence and all other ethical requirements of the Code of Professional Conduct for Registered Auditors issued by the Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (IRBA) that is consistent with the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (Part A and B), which is founded on fundamental principles of integrity, objectivity, professional competence and due care, confidentiality and professional behaviour.

KPMG Services Proprietary Limited applies the International Standard on Quality Control 1 and accordingly maintain comprehensive systems of quality control including documented policies and procedures regarding compliance with ethical requirements, professional standards and applicable legal and regulatory requirements.

Our responsibility

Our responsibility is to express a limited assurance conclusion on the selected sustainability information based on the procedures we have performed and the evidence we have obtained. We conducted our engagement in accordance with the International Standard on Assurance Engagements (ISAE) 3000 (Revised), Assurance Engagements other than Audits or Reviews of Historical Financial Information, issued by the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board. That Standard requires that we plan and perform our engagement to obtain limited assurance about whether the selected sustainability information is free from material misstatement.

A limited assurance engagement undertaken in accordance with ISAE 3000 (revised) involves assessing the suitability in the circumstances of Standard Bank’s use of its internally developed guidelines as the basis of preparation for the selected sustainability information, assessing the risks of material misstatement of the selected sustainability information whether due to fraud or error, responding to the assessed areas as necessary in the circumstances, and evaluating the overall presentation of the selected sustainability information.

A limited assurance engagement is substantially less in scope than a reasonable assurance engagement in relation to both risk assessment procedures, including an understanding of internal control, and the procedures performed in response to the assessed risks.

The procedures we performed were based on our professional judgement and included inquiries, observation of processes followed, inspection of documents, analytical procedures, evaluating the appropriateness of quantification methods and reporting policies, and agreeing or reconciling with underlying records.

Given the circumstances of the engagement, in performing the procedures listed above we:

  • Interviewed management to obtain an understanding of the control environment related to sustainability reporting.
  • Tested the processes and systems at group level which generate, collate, aggregate, monitor and report selected key performance indicators and inspected related documentation, more specifically:
    • Interviewed and discussed with relevant management, key personnel and/or stakeholders of Standard Bank the definitions and boundaries for selected performance information, and gathered information on the data collection and report preparation processes.
    • Evaluated internal data management controls based on system walkthroughs.
    • Inspected selected internally and externally generated documents and records and performed comprehensive data analyses.
    • Re-calculated the selected sustainability information, where relevant.
  • Evaluated whether the information presented in the Report is consistent with our overall knowledge and experience of sustainability management and performance at Standard Bank and is not materially inconsistent with information contained in the Report.

The procedures performed in a limited assurance engagement vary in nature and form, and are less in extent than for a reasonable assurance engagement. As a result, the level of assurance obtained in a limited assurance engagement is substantially lower than the assurance that would have been obtained had we performed a reasonable assurance engagement. Accordingly, we do not express a reasonable assurance opinion about whether Standard Bank’s selected sustainability information is prepared, in all material respects, in accordance with Standard Bank’s internally developed guidelines.

Limited assurance conclusion

Based on the procedures we have performed and evidence we have obtained, nothing has come to our attention that causes us to believe that the selected sustainability information set out in the subject matter paragraph above for the year ended 31 December 2015 is not prepared, in all material respects, in accordance with Standard Bank’s internally developed guidelines.

Other matters

The maintenance and integrity of the Standard Bank’s Website is the responsibility of Standard Bank’s management. Our procedures did not involve consideration of these matters and, accordingly we accept no responsibility for any changes to either the information in the Report or our independent limited assurance report that may have occurred since the initial date of its presentation on Standard Bank’s website.

Restriction of liability

Our work has been undertaken to enable us to express limited assurance conclusions on the selected sustainability information to the Directors of Standard Bank in accordance with the terms of our engagement, and for no other purpose. We do not accept or assume liability to any party other than Standard Bank, for our work, for this report, or for the conclusions we have reached.


Per Neil Morris
KPMG Services Proprietary Limited

Chartered Accountant (SA) Registered Auditor

KPMG Crescent
85 Empire Road Parktown 2193

12 April 2016

KPMG Policy Board:
Chief Executive: T. H. Hoole
Executive directors: N. Dlomu, M. Letsitsi, S. Louw, S. Malaba, M. Saloojee, M. Oddy, C.A.T Smit
Other directors: A. Jaffer (Chairman of the Board), H. De Beer, P. Fourie, F. Karreem, E. Magondo, G. Pickering, T. Rossouw, M. Saloojee, G. Smith

The company’s principal place of business is at KPMG Crescent, 85 Empire Road, Parktown, where a list of the directors’ names is available for inspection.


  • SBG was listed in the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the world
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  • Stanbic IBTC Stockbrokers Ltd was named 2015 Best Dealing Member Firm on the Nigerian Stock Exchange
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  • South Africa’s Sunday Times Top Brands Survey 2015 
    • First in the Retail Banks Consumer category for the third consecutive year



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