We believe change starts at home. We try to inhabit our own ecosystem in a manner that ensures a sustainable future for all. From the Green Team at our offices to our work in conservation and with communities globally, we aim to help preserve our natural world and support a better tomorrow for future generations.
Ninety One Green, a grassroots initiative of champions within the business, drives our efforts to be more sustainable and ensures our actions are aligned with our mission to exceed clients’ expectations in everything we do.
Investments involve risk; losses may be made.
We believe in creating a lasting positive impact in the societies in which we live and work. Our work with communities is arranged under four pillars:
We continue our partnership with JL Zwane Community Centre in Gugulethu, an impoverished township in Cape Town. This facility serves the needs of the community, providing services including education, adult literacy and HIV/Aids counselling and care. Our commitment to JL Zwane includes partnering with the Living Maths initiative, providing maths lessons to over 140 learners every year.
Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) spending and initiatives are overseen and approved by our African Management Committee. A significant portion of our BEE spending goes towards education and skills development within South Africa. We have continued our support of Promaths, a programme aimed at improving Maths, Science and English for disadvantaged communities. To date over 8,000 school children have been through the Promaths programme and in 2019, a staggering 224 distinctions in maths and 459 distinctions in science were achieved. We have also continued to support the Ikasuasa Student Financial Aid Programme and Fundisa (a unit trust with a special tertiary educational focus). As part of our spend on socio-economic development in South Africa for the 2021 financial year, we have supported the construction of boreholes and a solar powered water pump system in Thembisa, a rural village in Mpumalanga. The project will provide access to clean water to a community of 3,800 residents.
Ninety One proudly partners with the Tusk Trust on the annual Tusk Conservation Awards. We, together with Tusk, created these awards in 2013 to celebrate the extraordinary people who work with wildlife and communities in Africa to protect the continent’s irreplaceable natural asset – work that otherwise might go unnoticed outside their respective fields. The Awards have become an accolade in the truest sense, and recognise the unsung heroes of conservation, who are nominated by their peers without their prior knowledge, in recognition of their outstanding and inspirational efforts to conserve Africa’s natural heritage. In 2020 the awards ceremony was virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
As discussed above, we have also worked to mitigate our operational carbon footprint with BCP. BCP is a not-for-profit social enterprise that develops and sells carbon offsets, working in partnership with local communities and landowners to address deforestation in wildlife-rich areas of Zambia and sub-Saharan Africa. This is a long-term partnership and another way in which we aim to preserve our natural heritage and live our value of ‘Do the Right Thing’ and our purpose of ‘Investing for a Better Tomorrow’.
We launched our undergraduate bursary scheme, ChangeBlazers, in South Africa over the financial year. The programme offers undergraduate and postgraduate research bursaries. The bursaries are for those intent on pursuing careers in either education (teaching), healthcare (including psychology) or scarce skills (such as commerce, engineering, technology and mathematical sciences).
Our partnership with Songo.info, a sports and education charity, enables its development programme to be provided to more children in the township of Kayamandi in the Western Cape. Songo.info’s objective is that every child that comes through the songo.info programme goes on to be a confident, well-rounded individual who is gainfully employed and a contributing member of the community. It currently has 50 children from ages 6 to 24 years within the songo.info family.
Songo.info has humble beginnings: from a dream of providing a safe space for children to play on bikes, it has evolved into a sports and academic support programme focused on creating a long-term impact for the children in Kayamandi.
We were privileged to be able to support the construction of a school in the Nyae Nyae Conservancy. The school will assist with the preservation of the Ju/’hoansi language and culture.
We have continued to conduct our business and operations as responsible citizens.
We have contributed £2.9 million to COVID-19 relief efforts and initiated a staff-donation matching scheme which has continued into 2021. We have continued to support our suppliers, while demanding they act in the spirit of solidarity towards their people. We also supported the Namibian government’s appeal to help fund the procurement and rollout of COVID-19 vaccines. We donated approximately £240,000, which is 5% of the targeted private sector amount.
As the global economy accelerates its transition to a more sustainable model, are investors ready and able to adapt their portfolios to the new risks and opportunities? How well do they understand what it means to invest sustainably or to tackle net zero? And what do they expect from today’s investment managers?