Our ESG vision
To be an innovative leader in the communities in which we invest, create and operate – and to ensure we have a robust ESG programme that underpins all that we do.
At The Conygar Investment Company PLC (“Conygar”) we appreciate that our activities and services may have a direct impact on the natural, human and building environment. We aim to incorporate environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) principles in all our investment processes, our property developments and our operations, so that we can better safeguard the world in which we live, enhance our society and comply with applicable laws, regulations and other environmentally-oriented requirements.
The Board is mindful of its responsibilities to all of its stakeholders, including the wider community, when it makes decisions in setting and implementing the Company’s strategy. In considering environmental responsibility, the Board has regard to climate, nature and sustainability. We want to be able to demonstrate strong governance to meet the long term interests of our investors and wider stakeholders. Alongside our fiduciary, regulatory and legal responsibilities, we are committed to ensuring that ESG is embedded across our operations and in our investment decision making process. Where appropriate, we look to align with internationally recognised standards.
We have an active approach to property development and asset management of built mixed-use environments in the UK. As such, we are able to take existing assets and improve their environmental efficiency at the same time as fulfilling our financial goals.
We believe our key priority ESG areas are:
- Governance and disclosure
- Responsible investment
- Working collaboratively
- Meeting our legal obligations
These priority areas incorporate environmental responsibility, social responsibility and corporate governance.
- We will ensure that our property development activities integrate ESG considerations, including the effects of climate change, into the design process.
- We will regularly engage on ESG with our communities, employees, tenants and business partners.
- We will manage our own impact from our operations including office, travel and procurement activities and in the shared areas within the properties of our portfolio.
- We will partner with key contractors to help deliver on our commitments.
Our ESG goals
- Develop a mechanism for estimating and understanding our greenhouse gas Scope 3 (“GHG”) emissions, as well as further documenting GHG emissions within our control, to identify potential reductions and support the development of our approach towards Carbon Neutrality.
- Regularly engage our stakeholders on ESG risks and opportunities, providing support and guidance where possible, in order to create sustainable outcomes for the benefit of our stakeholders, the communities in which we operate and the environment.
- Seek opportunities to reduce the environmental and social impact of our developments throughout construction and their operational life and embed opportunities to enhance the surrounding environment and communities.
How we apply this policy
- This policy is informed and supported by Our Approach to ESG, as set out below.
- The Board has responsibility for approving this policy.
- This policy is included alongside our employee handbook, tenant handbook (being developed) and procurement policy to inform our tenants, business partners and staff of our commitments.
- This policy is reviewed annually.
How we monitor and report against this policy
- We report against this policy through our Company’s Board papers and Annual Reports.
- Our ESG performance reporting is readily accessible to our tenants and business partners and is also available to the public on request.
We are committed to continual improvement and therefore, when weaknesses in our performance are identified, we will take action to strengthen our systems by allocating resources and responsibilities internally, or by appointing experts to provide assistance.
Our approach to ESG
We are committed to minimising the environmental impact of our developments and to improving the resilience of our properties to the long-term impacts of climate change. As part of this we will:
- where possible and within our control, ensure our developments match or exceed best practice environmental performance benchmarks;
- constantly work on improving indoor environmental quality, and minimising energy and water demand and embodied carbon, investigate onsite renewable energy and promote sourcing of sustainable materials in our property acquisition and management activities;
- ensure that design and management of our public realm and outdoor spaces promotes resilience to extreme weather events, helps to manage pollution such as emissions to air and provides diverse habitats for biodiversity;
- design and manage our spaces to minimise and manage waste, energy and water and to help our tenants to do the same;
- work with our contractors, consultants and suppliers to drive environmental performance through our procurement policy and other engagement activities; and
- ensure that we consider ESG implications in all asset acquisitions and physical works including transitional and physical climate implication and actively plan to reduce environmental impact and risk through development of key performance indicators at company and asset level.
Conygar recognises that our activities create opportunities to enhance society, but also risks. We proactively manage both to ensure the best possible outcomes for our communities, employees, tenants and business partners.
The Board is committed to fairness and to encouraging diversity on the Board and in its operations, including prevention of any forms of discrimination including under the terms of the Equality Act 2010. The terms of reference on the Remuneration Committee include a requirement for it to regularly review the structure, size and composition of the Board including the skills, knowledge, experience and diversity of the Directors. The Committee’s report, as set out in the Company’s annual report, includes commentary on its work in this respect. The Corporate Governance Report, as set out in the Company’s annual report, includes details of the composition of the Board, including a description of the balance of skills, experience and gender on the Board.
Inclusive design is critical to community development. As such, we:
- engage regularly with the communities in which we operate in order to understand their changing needs;
- encourage architects and designers to focus on enhancing the living environment for our communities, thus designing spaces that promote diversity and inclusion to create vibrant communities; and
- work to ensure the health and safety of the community which is a fundamental consideration of every decision we make.
We are a growing team and our staff are our most important asset. We are committed to creating a workplace that allows them to thrive. Our commitments to staff are detailed in our employee handbook and include:
- strong employee engagement through regular team meetings and informal discussions;
- fair employee remuneration practices which mean our staff receive competitive pay for the same or similar jobs, qualifications and experience within the market;
- implementation of robust health and safety procedures to manage our key risks in order to create a proactive safety culture; and
- commitment to being an equal opportunities employer and ensure the recruitment, selection, training, development and promotion of individuals is on the basis of their qualifications, experience and performance.
Engaging with our tenants is essential for delivering true ESG value. We recognise that the way that our tenants use our buildings has significant influence on the ESG performance of our assets.
- We promote ESG criteria as part of our tenant handbook (being developed), which is a key document for engaging with tenants’ ESG performance.
- We will undertake periodic reviews of tenant satisfaction, helping to drive and influence design, refurbishment and maintenance of our buildings in a way that supports the needs of our tenants.
- We look to provide spaces which promote safety, health and wellbeing of our tenants and their customers.
We have an obligation to fulfil the financial goals of our business partners in our activities and our partners are increasingly requesting information relating to ESG. We undertake the following:
- proactive engagement on ESG risks and opportunities with our partners;
- data collection, aggregation and reporting to those partners to help provide context on our ESG performance; and
- to work with our partners to fulfil their goals and targets for ESG performance.
Consultants, contractors and suppliers
Engaging and partnering with our consultants, contractors and suppliers is crucial in delivering performance against this ESG policy and our ESG commitments. Accordingly, we:
- adhere to specific social and labour standards set out in our procurement policy;
- partner with key contractors and consultants to deliver the commitments set out in this policy;
- require our key suppliers to have their own ESG commitments or, where they are a small business, to adhere to the key principles of our ESG policy;
- partner with key suppliers to promote health, safety and wellbeing of our building users; and
- work with key contractors, consultants and suppliers to collect data on our ESG performance to help us manage and improve ESG metrics and targets over time.
Conygar believes that robust and effective governance is the foundation for operating in line with our fiduciary duty and the applicable regulations. It is also fundamental for meeting the commitments we make to ourselves, the environment and to all our stakeholders. We always perform to the highest standards of ethical conduct with all of our staff complying with the codes of their professional bodies and those detailed in their individual employment contracts and our employee handbook. In line with this, we:
- carry out our business fairly, honestly and openly by combating bribery, corruption and fraud;
- recognise and proactively manage the risks we face in relation to data protection, privacy and cybersecurity by implementing robust systems and regular staff training;
- respect our shareholders’ rights by operating transparently and ensuring we communicate openly and in a timely manner; and
- ensure fair executive compensation which means our executives receive pay arrangements in line with market standards.