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Liberty Holdings

Responsible investment

Through STANLIB, Liberty is a signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI) and has endorsed the Code for Responsible Investing in South Africa (CRISA), and the principles of both serve as the overarching basis for responsible investment across the group.

STANLIB incorporates environmental, social and governance considerations into its investment processes. STANLIB reports annually on its progress against the six responsible investment principles in its public Transparency Report to the UN PRI. For access to the report please visit https://www.unpri.org/signatories/stanlib-asset-management-ltd/1787.article   LibFin plays a significant role in managing Liberty’s balance sheet and is responsible for the administration of the credit portfolio that comprises a broad spectrum of credit assets. Through our various credit investment activities, LibFin evaluates a thorough and comprehensive list of investment considerations which include the CRISA principles.

Liberty delegates the investment management of its assets to appointed investment managers, and mandates that they adopt the principles and practices of the Code. Adherence to this requirement, the extent of disclosure with respect to proxy voting and the nature and extent of engagements are monitored on an ongoing basis by due diligence reviews.

Renewable energy and infrastructure investment

We are committed to supporting the efforts of the private sector in the provision of bulk infrastructure for social and economic development in South Africa and the rest of Africa. Recognising the importance of creating an alternative investment sector, we have invested in various infrastructure projects, including power generation and energy sector projects with the aim of supporting the growth and development of these areas for sustainable economic growth.

Liberty, together with STANLIB, participates in the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme and has invested R3,8 billion (2016: R3,4 billion) in debt funding for solar and wind energy projects thus far. This investment in several projects across sub-Saharan Africa will see the contribution of 2,2 million megawatt-hours of electricity per year over the next two decades, the equivalent of powering 192 590 average South African households according to data provided by the World Energy Council.

STANLIB invested in Eskom bonds to support the development of the energy sector in South Africa. The STANLIB Fixed Income portfolios are currently one of the most sizeable holders of domestic Eskom debt funding, allowing the power utility to meet its funding requirements. The bonds, which are government guaranteed, assist Eskom in sustainably providing for its current pressing energy needs while also creating a positive return for investors and a lower credit risk.

Other investments in infrastructure include toll roads and rail development projects. Liberty is one of the larger investors with a total exposure of R6,3 billion.

Socially targeted responsible investments

In support of creating shared value for the communities in which we operate, Liberty has created the STANLIB Multi-Manager Alternative Assets capability. This is a dedicated effort to increase investment into non-traditional investments, most of which have high social and environmental impact. The increased participation in these markets is anticipated to come from the new range of customer-friendly investment products managed by STANIB Multi-Manager.

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