By Nersan Naidoo, Chief Executive at Sanlam Investments

The findings of the Sanlam Gauge have created meaningful dialogue aiding our robust commitment to transformation. We echo our group CEO Paul Hanratty’s sentiments that change does take time – and as a proudly South African black-owned asset manager, we will do everything in our power to contribute to greater, faster and more meaningful transformation in South Africa.

At Sanlam Investments, we strive to advance a cause greater than ourselves; to protect the people and places we operate in and use our resources to generate more than we consume, so we can continue doing these things for generations to come. For decades, we have been on our own transformation journey, focussed both on transforming our own organisation and using our skills and influence to empower generations to be financially confident, secure and prosperous.

Ownership and broad-based black economic empowerment

Following African Rainbow Capital (ARC) Financial Services’ acquisition of 25% of the business, we are proud that we became the country’s largest black-owned asset manager. The transaction has contributed meaningfully to the ongoing transformation of the asset management industry, which has been far too slow for too long.

The ARC deal was a continuation of our Group’s history of broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) deals, which began in 1993 when we sold Metropolitan Life to Methold as South Africa’s first major black empowerment deal. More recently, our Ubuntu-Botho economic empowerment transaction was one of the most successful deals of its kind by way of value creation for our black shareholders. We have also diversified our employee base along gender and racial dimensions to reflect the demographic profile of our society, and we are building rich succession pipelines through sustained mentorship of our emerging talent.

Using our skills and influence for impact

We’re a business that is dedicated to helping South Africans live with confidence. We know the world is incredibly complex with an inordinate number of environmental, social and governance (ESG) challenges. Our responsibility is to use our will and resources to meet these challenges and create a lasting positive impact for the society we serve.

Sanlam Investments houses several investment management businesses, covering both the public listed and private markets and spanning various asset classes. This enables us to focus on the full spectrum, from our sustainable investing to our impact-driven objectives. While sustainable investing mitigates risk and adopts progressive ESG practices, impact investing addresses societal challenges while generating competitive financial returns.

In the same deliberate way that a client pursues an investment return profile or objective, we are building disciplined approaches towards ESG objectives. To drive this, we have partnered with Robeco, a leading global sustainable investing practitioner that is ranked first for sustainable investing in the renowned ShareAction survey covering 75 global asset managers.

Mobilising capital to make a positive impact

At the height of the pandemic, we launched our Investors’ Legacy Range, with the specific objective of creating and preserving 27 000 fair, inclusive and quality jobs. Sanlam committed R2.25 billion of its own funds. We believe that putting our capital alongside our clients’ is the best way to demonstrate alignment. Our portfolio managers are also invested in the Investors Legacy Range. This is how we’re using our financial products to create and preserve jobs through our purpose, capital and expertise – helping to transform the lives of as many South Africans as possible.