With the right partners and strategy, growing highly successful and profitable companies can have a significant developmental impact. This is what drives us: building a diversified portfolio of funds and companies to deliver Growth that Matters. Growth that Matters is about seeking strong financial returns while creating positive outcomes for the communities and the environment where we invest. In short, we invest for both profit and impact. Our impact strategy can be described by referring to three themes:
Good investments, done right
When we talk about good investments, we mean investments that strive to generate superior risk-adjusted returns. At the same time, we also mean investments that are able to make a measurable positive difference within the communities where we invest. This can include investments in sectors such as healthcare, education or agribusiness as well as investing in companies that wish to grow their existing business by attracting additional capital and applying progressive social and environmental values.
In 2015, we were thrilled to witness a historic shift in international development and business cooperation when the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), 17 development objectives and 169 targets, were agreed by all nations and ratified by the UN. This historic agreement identifies clear, concrete means to eradicate poverty and social inequality by 2030. Sarona is a recognised leader in the emerging field of blended finance for development and while the SDGs are new, Sarona’s commitment to these goals is not. Through our private equity funds programme, supported by public government agencies, Sarona wishes to make a scalable and significant contribution towards the SDGs. We embed SDGs in our monitoring process and in the way we measure and evaluate the “impact” of our investments.
Catalyst for change
Sarona recognises its responsibility to act as a catalyst for change within developing markets. We do this by acting as a bridge between private capital and entrepreneurs in high-growth markets and by encouraging fund managers and investee companies to improve their social, environmental and governance performance.
To give more transparency to our ESG commitment and achievements, we publish an Annual Values Report. In 2016, we have reported on 22 IRIS metrics, measuring the impact of the company’s global Frontier and Emerging Markets portfolio. The report shares findings gathered from 152 impact questionnaires, 10 company case studies, two fund case studies and two grant case studies. For more information, please download our Values Report 2016.
Innovation through collaboration
Throughout its history, Sarona has created innovative products and solutions by working with a variety of public and private stakeholders including Global Affairs Canada, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (US government agency), as well as industry associations such as B Lab and the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN), of which we are members of the Investors’ Council.
Sarona adopted the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). We implement the Principles in the way we make our investment decisions and select and monitor our managers. We also support the adoption of the Principles among our GPs and welcome industry collaboration to further promote incorporation of environmental, social and governance issues. As part of our commitment to the Principles we report annually on our progress. For more information, please download Sarona’s latest PRI Transparency Report.