• Introduction
    • OVERVIEW
    • INTRODUCTION TO THE STANDARD BANK GROUP
    • OUR REPORTING SUITE
    • A LETTER FROM OUR CEO
    • STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT
    • ASSURANCE STATEMENT
     
     
     
     
     
     
  • SEE impact areas
    • OVERVIEW
    • IMPACT REPORTING
    • 1.
      FINANCIAL INCLUSION
    • 2.
      JOB CREATION AND ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT
    • 3.
      INFRASTRUCTURE
    • 4.
      AFRICA TRADE AND INVESTMENT
    • 5.
      EDUCATION AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT
    • 6.
      EMPLOYEE DEVELOPMENT AND TRAINING
     
     
  • ESG
    • OVERVIEW
    • ABOUT THIS REPORT
    • MANAGING E&S RISKS AND OPPORTUNITIES
    • OUR DIRECT ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE
    • VALUING OUR PEOPLE
    • INVESTING IN COMMUNITIES
    • PROMOTING SOUND GOVERNANCE AND INTEGRITY
    • ESG METRICS AND POLICIES
     
     
  • Transformation
    • OVERVIEW
    • INTRODUCTION
    • A LETTER FROM SBSA CE: LUNGISA FUZILE
    • STANDARD BANK’S BEE SCORECARD
    • WHERE TO FIND MORE INFORMATION
    • B-BBEE CERTIFICATE
     
     
     
     
     
     
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About this report

Standard Bank is committed to doing the right business the right way, ensuring that our clients are treated fairly and consistently, that we adhere to global and national regulatory and governance standards, and that our decisions and actions are informed by the group’s values and ethics. As per South Africa’s King IV Code of Corporate Governance, we recognise that we are an integral part of the societies in which we operate, dependent on these societies for our licence to operate, and that we are therefore obligated, morally and legally, to act in accordance with what is good for these societies as well as what is good for the bank.

About this report

Our employees, clients, regulators and investors increasingly expect us to ensure that our business activities deliver a positive impact for society, the economy and the environment. Our governance approach promotes strategic decisionmaking that combines long-term and shorter-term outcomes to reconcile the interests of the group, stakeholders and society to create sustainable value. We see corporate governance as an enabler that creates competitive advantage through enhanced accountability, effective risk management, clear performance management, greater transparency, and effective leadership.

We support responsible investment through assessing and managing our environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks and opportunities. This helps to ensure that our investors gain comfort from implementation of our ESG policies, processes and performance, to inform our decision-making.

Our ESG Report provides an overview of the processes and governance structures we have in place to support our commitment to doing the right business, the right way. It provides an update on our progress towards enhancing our positive social and environmental impacts, and mitigating negative impacts, through our core business activities.

For more information about our approach to corporate governance, please see the Standard Bank Group’s Annual Integrated Report and our Governance and Remuneration Report.

For information about how Standard Bank applies the King IV corporate governance principles, please visit the group’s 2018 application of the King IV Principles.

Engaging our stakeholders and determining our material issues
MATERIAL ISSUES DURING THE REPORTING PERIOD

Our material issues are those that matter most to our key stakeholders and providers of capital, and which impact on our ability to create value in the short, medium and long term. We therefore consider an issue to be material if it has the potential to substantially impact on our commercial viability, our social relevance and our relationships with our stakeholders. Our material issues are informed by the expectations of our stakeholders, and the economic, social and environmental context in which we operate (the triple bottom line).

We measure our ability to create shared value in terms of our five strategic value drivers – client focus, employee engagement and risk and conduct, which determine our financial outcomes and our social, economic and environmental (SEE) impacts. Our material issues encompass the risks and opportunities in relation to each of these value drivers.

While material issues evolve over time, in response to changes in our operating environment and stakeholder expectations, the broad themes tend to be relatively stable. We view the materiality determination process as a business tool that facilitates integrated thinking.

How we determine our material issues
Identification
Identification
of issues based on engagement with internal and external stakeholders to generate a list of material issues, categorised by value driver, and supplemented by a review of internal reports, emerging risks and strategic priorities, stakeholder engagement and media coverage.
Engagement
Engagement
with stakeholders to test the completeness of the list of material issues and define priorities.
Discussion
Discussion
by group executive committee members to develop a final list of material issues.
Review and approval
Review and approval
of final material issues by the group social and ethics committee.
Our value drivers
CLIENT FOCUS – Place the client at the centre of everything we do CLIENT FOCUS – Place the client at the centre of everything we do
OUR MATERIAL ISSUES
  • Deliver a compelling value proposition for our clients in an increasingly competitive environment
  • Protect and maintain the integrity of client data
  • Work with our customers to mitigate overindebtedness (including sales-in-execution)
plus
Financial inclusion EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT – Make Standard Bank a great place to work
OUR MATERIAL ISSUES
  • Diversity and inclusion (particular focus on gender equity)
  • Transformation in South Africa
  • Impact of digitisation and automation on workforce requirements
  • Build and retain local skills and capabilities in countries of operation
plus
RISK AND CONDUCT – Do the right business, the right way RISK AND CONDUCT – Do the right business, the right way
OUR MATERIAL ISSUES
  • Cybersecurity
  • Stability, security and speed of IT systems
  • Reputational and operational risk associated with third parties, counterparties and suppliers
  • Card fraud
  • Policy, regulatory and legal risks in key markets
  • Constructive relationships with regulatory authorities
  • Increase in physical security threats/incidents in Africa Regions
equals
FINANCIAL OUTCOMES – Deliver superior value to our shareholders FINANCIAL OUTCOMES – Deliver superior value to our shareholders
OUR MATERIAL ISSUES
  • Returns on IT investment
  • Maintain resilience of our balance sheet
  • Improve efficiencies and manage the cost base
  • Sustainable revenue growth
SEE IMPACTS – Create and maintain sustainable value SEE IMPACTS – Create and maintain sustainable value
OUR MATERIAL ISSUES
  • Contribute to job creation and enterprise development in countries of operation
  • Deepen financial inclusion across Africa with appropriate digital offerings
  • Balancing Africa’s power and energy needs with the negative impact of climate change
  • Adaptation to and mitigation of climate change, especially in relation to water in key sectors and markets
WHAT IS OUR ‘SEE IMPACT’ ALL ABOUT?
Standard Bank’s business activities have social, economic and environmental (SEE) impacts in the economies and communities in which we operate.

We are committed to understanding these impacts, which are direct and indirect, and using this understanding to inform our decision-making at every level. This enables us to maximise the positive impacts of our business, and minimise and mitigate the negative impacts, while simultaneously generating new business opportunities and financial returns for the group. We’ve adopted SEE impacts as one of the five value drivers which inform our strategy, and against which we measure our performance.

SEE provides us with a lens to assess how we create value for our stakeholders and Standard Bank:
See
1
It helps us find business opportunities arising from societal, economic and environmental challenges in the markets in which we operate
2
It enables us to weigh up commercial versus societal impacts and make appropriate decisions on this basis – delivering what matters to our clients while enhancing the trust, reputation and sustainability of Standard Bank
3
It enables us to provide a balanced and objective account of our impacts to our diverse stakeholders
4
It raises awareness across Standard Bank of the social, economic and environmental impacts – positive and negative – that arise from our business activities, including what we finance