We adopt an integrated approach to sustainability, applying an equal focus on risk management and positive impact outcomes. We seek to deeply understand the trade-offs posed by investments, being thoughtful in our investment decisions, purposefully acting to be part of the solution in facing global environmental, social and governance challenges.
Our commitment to responsible investment is central to our investment objectives and to fulfilling our fiduciary duties towards our shareholders and beneficiaries. We believe that embedding environmental, social and governance(ESG) thinking into our investment decision-making is critical if we want to create positive futures and sustainable, superior, risk-adjusted returns for our clients.
What we focus on
OMAI seeks to address the big challenges facing our continent, understand client needs for positive impact and where we can meaningfully make a difference. Across a diverse portfolio, OMAI has brought focus to four sustainability challenges; Climate Change, Decent Work, Diversity and Governance. OMAI capabilities may also focus on additional key issues such as infrastructure, education and sustainable cities.
Climate change is already affecting people, ecosystems and livelihoods. According to the IPCC limiting warming to 1.5°C is possible, but would require unprecedented transitions in all aspects of society. There are clear benefits to keeping warming to 1.5°C, rather than the previously thought safe limit of 2°C. OMAI aims to be part of the solution for a 1.5°C world.
We look to measure the carbon footprint of our portfolios, and the carbon offset generated by our renewable energy investments, and drive a transition to a sustainable, 1.5°C world energy mix. This means aligning our investments with a practical energy mix across Africa that promotes development but remains within the carbon budget of a 1.5°C world.
A decent job provides individuals with the ability to be in control of their own livelihood and financial circumstances. Productivity and meaningful work stimulates the mind, increases confidence and enhances social interactions. Meaningful work gives us a sense of pride, identity and personal achievement. Along with benefiting individuals, it also contributes to a healthy, dynamic economy and society, decreasing social ills of poverty and crime. Across Africa unemployment is constantly a concern, with youth skills shortages and unemployment being key challenges to solve.
Our goal is to increase the number of jobs, provide decent, meaningful work and enhance the skills of individuals across all our investments.
The two aspects of diversity that OMAI specifically focusses on are gender equality and transformation in the South African context.
While the world has achieved progress towards gender equality and women’s empowerment, women and girls continue to suffer discrimination and violence in every part of the world. UN Secretary-General, Mr. António Guterres, states that gender equality and empowering women and girls is ‘the unfinished business of our time’.
For all OMAI’s South African-based investments, transformation is the process and aim to redress past discrimination against historically disadvantaged South Africans (HDSAs). The objective is to have a company’s workforce mirror the demographic make-up of the country.
Good governance lies at the heart of a sustainable business that delivers returns for all stakeholders, including shareholders, lenders, employees, suppliers and the communities on a shared value basis. As a responsible investor, OMAI maintains a continual focus on governance aspects in investment decision making and active stewardship of assets.