We are committed to creating value for our stakeholders in a manner that is responsible, transparent, and that respects the rights of all. We recognise that to achieve long-term success, we need to deliver our Business Strategy in a way that not only creates value for Aspen and our shareholders, but also in a manner which demonstrates our responsibility to society and the planet.
Our sustainability commitments
We believe that doing business in a sustainable and responsible manner is integral to our purpose, our values and our philosophy Healthcare. We Care. Our sustainability commitments are integrated into the Group’s strategic objectives and underpin the way we do business. Our sustainability commitments are determined with consideration to the following key aspects:
UN Global Compact
We are a UN Global Compact participant and have aligned our sustainability commitments with the principles outlined in the UN Global Compact, which cover human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption and bribery. Our previously published Communication on Progress report, available online, sets out our approach to the application of these principles.
United Nations Sustainable Development Goals
Launched in September 2015, the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is a global action plan for people, planet and prosperity. The 17 SDGs aim to tackle the world’s most pressing challenges through the promotion of sustainable development. As a multinational pharmaceutical company, we play an important role in contributing to the delivery of the SDGs. While all the SDGs are essential, we have identified eight goals where we believe we are able to have the greatest impact and we have linked these to our sustainability themes and material sustainability topics.
Enhanced governance over sustainability
Demonstrating our commitment to sustainability, the Group has undertaken several steps to enhance Executive and Board oversight of the Group’s related opportunities and risks and overall sustainability performance. In FY2022, the Group Senior Leadership Conference endorsed a high-level roadmap for the development of a Group-wide Sustainability Strategy, indicating support at the most senior Executive and Board levels for a more deliberate integration of sustainability commitments into the Group strategy. The development of our sustainability strategy is progressing according to key milestones under the oversight of the Executive Sustainability Forum, chaired by the Group Chief Operations Officer. We continue to enhance our reporting on sustainability-related issues to the Social & Ethics Committee which monitors the Group’s sustainability and ESG performance across the four sustainability pillars.
A link to performance and remuneration
Aligned to our remuneration philosophy, we have incorporated sustainability (ESG) KPIs into our performance and incentive schemes. We have achieved this through the inclusion of sustainability-related KPIs (aligned with Group objectives) within the business unit scorecards, the inclusion of specific ESG-related priorities in the annual key performance areas or assessments ("KPAs") of the Group Chief Executive as well as the inclusion of an ESG measure relating to our key sustainability focus of "access to medicines" in the management long-term incentive scheme page 127.
Responsible strategic direction of the Group’s sustainability strategy.
Audit & Risk Committee
Social & Ethics Committee
Oversees sustainability and ESG strategy development and monitors performance across our four sustainability pillars.
Remuneration & Nomination Committee
Ensures inclusion of appropriate sustainability and ESG-related KPIs into Group, executive director and business unit performance scorecards and incentive schemes aligned to remuneration governance principles, Group strategy and shareholder expectations.
Group Executive Committee
Approves sustainability strategy and monitors execution.
Executive Sustainability Forum
Supports the Group Executive Committee and is comprised of cross-functional Group Executive Committee members, other senior leaders and subject matter experts. Provides oversight of the sustainability strategy development, implementation and reporting.
Group Risk & Sustainability
Reporting to the Group Chief Corporate Services Officer and supported by the Sustainability Working Groups, the Group Risk & Sustainability team drives our sustainability and ESG work across the Group, ensures coordination and is responsible for Group-level sustainability and ESG-related reporting.
Cross-functional and cross geographical Sustainability Working Groups
Focusing on specific pillars and sustainability topics and collaborate to develop sustainability strategies and roadmaps for the Group.
Our commitment to transparency in reporting
We are continuously developing our sustainability and ESG reporting to enhance our ability to respond to the increasing disclosure expectations of our stakeholders, including our investors. In addition to our current reporting commitments to the UN Global Compact and CDP, we map our disclosures against GRI, SASB, TCFD and the JSE Sustainability Disclosure Guidance in our Sustainability and ESG Data Supplement, available online. We have retained our listing in the Top 30 FTSE/JSE Responsible Investment Index Series and we are a constituent of the FTSE4Good Index.
Sustainability materiality assessment approach
Our sustainability strategy is guided by a sustainability materiality assessment. The business environment in which we operate and the expectations from our stakeholders continuously evolve. Our sustainability materiality assessment is used to identify which governance, social and environmental issues are of the greatest interest to our stakeholders and have the greatest impact on the business. It informs our sustainability strategies and allows us to identify opportunities and prioritise our efforts to address the issues of significance. It further allows us to establish meaningful metrics to evaluate our sustainability performance and informs the content on our reporting.
This year we reviewed the sustainability materiality outcomes of the prior year and made updates to reflect the rapidly changing external context and Aspen’s strategic positioning.
Key changes to our material sustainability topics:
The updated sustainability materiality matrix was debated by the Executive Sustainability Forum, approved by the Group Executive Committee and reviewed by the Social & Ethics Committee. Our intention is to further enhance this process through engaging more broadly with our internal and external stakeholders in future periods.
As a pharmaceutical company, and aligned to our purpose of improving the health and quality of life of patients, we have a responsibility, and the opportunity, to make a meaningful contribution to the global challenge of making healthcare available to all.
180 medicines on the WHO Essential Medicines List
Patients in more than 60 low and middle-income countries treated with our medicines
11 SED initiatives aimed at strengthening healthcare, including emergency product donations
To deliver on our purpose of improving the health and quality of life of patients, we must attract, develop and retain diverse people who are the best at what they do.
R9 billion in salaries and benefits paid to our more than 9 100 employees
R59,8 million invested in training and development initiatives
35% female representation in senior roles
Zero occupational fatalities
Our long-term success depends on building and maintaining trust with society. Responsible corporate citizenship is grounded in a commitment to upholding the highest ethical standards in the conduct of our global business operations.
Strong corporate governance aligned with King IV principles
218 SED projects implemented across 22 countries
R4 496 million spent with empowered suppliers in South Africa
Constituent of FTSE4Good Index and
Top 30 FTSE/JSE Responsible Investment Index
We are committed to operating an ethical and responsible business underpinned by our shared values and governance structures. We uphold the dignity, fundamental freedoms and human rights of our employees, contractors and the communities in which we live and work, and others affected by our activities.
Access to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment has been declared a universal human right. To enable a healthier world, we must take steps to reduce the impact we have on the environment as we convert and use natural resources in the manufacture and distribution of our quality medicines and APIs.
28% reduction on Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions over the past five years
37% reduction in water withdrawn over the past five years
86% waste recycled and only 2% to landfill
CDP-CC and CDP-WS performance
rated as "B Management Level" and
"B-Management Level", respectively