Stakeholder engagement and management process
We are committed to building collaborative relationships that are mutually beneficial to all our stakeholders and have engaged in partnerships that constructively advance the interests of our stakeholders. Our stakeholders include our shareholders, employees, partners, governments and communities in countries where we operate, regulatory authorities, the media, funders, and groups and individuals who may be affected by our operations.
Management has identified the need for more active stakeholder engagement to better understand expectations and to address the concerns of our stakeholders to ensure that the Group builds strong relationships in an honest and transparent manner. This process of engagement across all stakeholder groups is planned for the current financial year and the Group has appointed Grant Thornton to assist it to undertake these engagements.
The sustainability of SacOil is inextricably linked to forging mutually beneficial partnerships with other oil and gas companies. In fact, it is a fundamental component of our business strategy and business model. The Group has successfully forged key partnerships with Total and EGPC, straddling various geographies where it believes significant returns on investment will be realised in line with its return on capital programme. The Company is committed to identifying and collaborating with other industry players that advances the development of Africa’s vast resources.
Funders and Lenders
The Group recognises that the generation of sustainable financial results is key to establishing confidence from the financial community of funders. Sound financial and asset management therefore remain key priorities of the Group.
Shareholders and Investors
Sacoil continues to strengthen its relationship with its shareholders and views shareholder dialogue and activism as key components of a successful organisation. The Group is committed to open and transparent dialogue with shareholders and potential investors.
Institutional and private investors are informed of SacOil’s financial performance and shifts in its strategy through appropriate and regular stock exchange announcements and circulated information. Key engagements have included meetings with both private and institutional investors, as well as market analysts, where required and these may yield positive outcomes that could translate into increased levels of investment in the Group over the next financial year. Sacoil held its Annual General Meeting on 12 September 2014 where it shared its integrated annual report with shareholders and where shareholders had an opportunity to engage with the Board.
Shareholders can view all of the Group’s financial results and announcements on our website and also through the SENS and RNS services. Regular updates on our activities and operations are also available on our website, www.sacoilholdings.com, and social media platforms. We facilitate a shareholder communications service that keeps our shareholders updated by providing them the option to register on our website for automatic updates via e-mail.
Our human resource capability remains key to delivering on the mandate from shareholders and in this regard the Group remains committed to creating a work environment that promotes fair and equal opportunities for all its employees. To this extent our commitment is captured in our code of business conduct and ethics. The code captures our commitment to adhere to fair labour practices and decent work ethics as enshrined in the conventions of the International Labour Organisation to which South Africa is a signatory.
Employees are encouraged to develop their skills further, which are also employed to the benefit of the Group and countries where we operate. The skills transfer to locals through our partnership arrangements with operators are key instruments in this regard.
Performance of employees is regularly reviewed by management and is regulated by employment and performance contracts in place. Structures are also in place to facilitate the reporting of legitimate grievances or concerns that employees may have without fear of victimisation or reprisal.
Government and regulatory authorities
Our relations with governments and the regulatory authorities in all the geographies where we operate remain sound and are not taken for granted. Indeed, the Group operates on the premise that these relations must be mutually beneficial to each country where we operate and to the Group itself. This ethos is central to maintaining our licences to operate. To this extent we have held regular engagements with the representative national and provincial governments and representatives of industry bodies.
SacOil requires that, wherever possible, people from local communities participate and are employed in its operations.
Through the conclusion of social and labour plans the Group will seek to improve the lives of the local communities impacted by its operations. The key focus areas of these plans we envisage will be on education, health and skills development to ensure sustainable communities, but will further be informed by proper consultation with the recognised authorities and leaders of these communities. These endeavours are of course dependent on the successful development of these operations.
Media exposure remains positive and the Group has derived benefit from media exposure through regular updates and press releases. Management will continue to promote the Group’s reputation in a positive manner through the judicious use of electronic and print media both locally and internationally.
Non-governmental organisations (“NGOs”) and lobby groups
The Group engages with NGOs and lobby groups on issues of mutual concern. A key priority in the long term is to grow these relations as the Group expands its corporate social investment initiatives.
The Group’s procurement policy ensures the establishment of relationships which drive efficiency and facilitate a smooth-running supply chain. Continuous engagement with suppliers, adherence to procurement terms and local business development will ensure the Group is well placed to achieve its long-term business objectives. These relationships will remain a priority in all countries where we operate as the Group expands its operations in line with the revised strategy.