Placed third on the list of 30 leading banks, financial and infrastructure institutions and insurance companies based on an independent assessment, Sistema is in the first out of five groups of the ranking's participants, which is characterised by an advanced level of introduction of sustainability principles in the core business. Participants of the leading group, which also includes Sberbank, VTB and Credit Bank of Moscow, have an ESG strategy in place, with personnel involved in its shaping and implementation, sustainable practices are integrated in the corporate governance system and business processes, and the level of disclosure of non-financial information is high.
The ranking is based on assessment of the ESG profile – the level of integration of ESG (Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance) factors by public companies, and their compliance with best practices, basic international and Russian benchmarks and standards of sustainability.
"In the NRA industry-based ranking, where the bulk of participants are from the banking sector, Sistema is one of the few private investment firms that give priority to ESG matters, which confirms our leadership ambitions in this area, proven by practical steps to integrate sustainability principles in our business. Independent assessments are important markers of change and provide the necessary benchmarks, enabling us to monitor progress of the Corporation's ESG transformation," said Anna Belova, Deputy Chair of the Board of Directors of Sistema and Chair of its Sustainability and Investor Relations Committee, commenting on the ranking results.
At the end of 2020, Sistema included ESG criteria into its updated strategy, reflecting the basic principles of responsible investing at the stages of due diligence and acquisition of assets, management of portfolio companies and exits. The leading role in shaping the general ESG agenda belongs to the Sustainability and Investor Relations Committee of Sistema's Board of Directors. The Committee promotes the development of Sistema's corporate culture in line with ESG principles in order to enhance the sustainability of the investment portfolio. Using mechanisms of corporate governance, Sistema actively assists its portfolio companies with shaping a similar ESG culture in order to increase their value and decrease non-financial risks, relying on framework corporate policies on sustainable development, environment, human rights, business ethics, corporate social responsibility and charity. It also publishes consolidated reports on sustainable development.
About the ranking
The National Rating Agency began publishing a series of ESG rankings of issuers of securities included in the Tier 1 and 2 quotation lists of the Moscow Exchange in 2021. The first part of the ranking was published in July; it provides information about the ESG profiles of non-financial companies and includes 105 participants from industrial and consumer sectors, including Sistema's public assets: MTS, Segezha Group, Ozon and Etalon Group.
This product was developed by the NRA in order to offer investors and all stakeholders a simple and transparent tool for assessing companies in the area of ESG and to help promote sustainable investment principles in the Russian market.
The National Rating Agency is an independent Russian credit rating agency. It was the first Russian signatory of the PRI for credit rating agencies and has the status of observer of Sustainability-Linked Bond Principles of the International Capital Market Association (ICMA). The Agency's representatives are members of working groups of the Executive Committee of the ICMA's Sustainability-Linked Bond Principles for 2021-2022. The Agency is included in the register of the Moscow Exchange as a verifier of green and social bond issues and in the list of approved independent verifiers of the Russian development corporation VEB.RF. The NRA takes into account ESG criteria in its rating methodology.