The 2015 Sustainability Report concentrates on the issues that are most material to our core business and the Group's stakeholders. Identification of the issues was performed through a materiality analysis, a process structured according to the “G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines” of GRI, the main reference standard for sustainability reporting and the <IR>, the international reference framework for integrated reporting, promoted by the IIRC (International Integrated Reporting Council), which allows to identify organizational and strategic factors and solutions that are the basis of the current and future ability of the Group to create value. Therefore, the aspects that “reflect the significant economic, social and environmental impacts of the organisation or that could substantially influence assessments and decisions taken by stakeholders” are considered “material”.
In this regard, the materiality analysis was integrated with the IIRC reporting framework that encompasses:
- the introduction of the six capitals (financial, social and relational, intellectual, infrastructural, human and natural), to highlight how the value creation process is the result of synergies between financial and non-financial capital;
- elements of prospective nature, megatrends, in order to give new interpretations to issues considered as “material" and increase the Group supervision on the evolution of the external environment.
The process recommended by the GRI involves three steps:
IDENTIFICATION OF MATERIAL ISSUES AND STAKEHOLDERS
The identification of any relevant issue for Intesa Sanpaolo's business and the stakeholders considers the strategic vision of the top management, the outlook on the evolution of the external environment and the Group's reference sector as well as the stakeholders' perspective.
In order to integrate the Topic Tree diagram with additional topics of interest, including in relation to any major megatrend that could have an impact on the Group, the documentary analysis of internal and external sources that was conducted in previous years, this year was integrated with the "critical" reading of the following documents:
- documentary sources within the Group, including the 2014-2017 Strategic Plan, top management communications, Shareholders’ Meeting minutes, communications to shareholders, ESG rating agency questionnaires, Sustainability Reports for the last three years, policies adopted by the Group and complaints on the Code of Ethics;
- external documentary sources, including the reference reporting standards for sustainability performance (G4, <IR>, SASB);
- Sustainability Reports of other Italian and international financial groups;
- sources from national and international institutions (World Bank, ISTAT, World Economic Forum etc.) for the identification of general and specific megatrends of the banking sector.
The issues identified which make up Intesa Sanpaolo's Topic Tree diagram were the subject of listening activities and dialogue with stakeholders during 2015.
PRIORITISATION AND DEFINITION OF THE MATERIALITY MATRIX
Also for 2015, the stakeholder engagement and listening process represent the core of the materiality analysis. To prioritise the issues identified, each issue was assessed, on the one hand in relation to its significance to business strategies and commitments defined in the Business Plan and, on the other hand, in relation to the degree to which it represents the interests and expectations of stakeholders: these two aspects are represented by the two axes of the materiality matrix, which is presented hereunder. The two aspects respond to the need to identify, for each topic:
- the degree of commitment that the company has taken or plans to take on each issue according to the perception of the potential to generate risks and opportunities for the short, medium and long-term strategic objectives;
- the relevance perceived by the stakeholders on the same issues assessed through a variety of listening and engagement initiatives implemented by Intesa Sanpaolo during 2015.
THE 2015 MATERIALITY MATRIX
The areas considered to be priorities for 2015, on which the Sustainability Report discusses the related matters in detail, the management method, significant indicators and the relationship between said issues and the Business Plan progress are:
The main differences compared to the 2014 materiality matrix concern the issues which are mostly related to the launch of the Banca dei Territori Service Model, included in the 2014-2017 Business Plan and effective since January 2015. In this context, issues related to the quality of customer relations and of the products and services offered become more and more relevant. Similarly, Professional Training and Development have been identified as key factors for the implementation of the Group’s new service model.
Another issue perceived as particularly relevant is innovation towards customers, which was achieved through the continued evolution of service towards integrated multi-channel operations, and the establishment of the Chief Innovation Officer Area.
In addition to being a fundamental leverage for Italy's growth, support to the business system continues to be a success factor for the Bank.
Relations with suppliers and the community do not qualify as material issues, but Intesa Sanpaolo recognises their high social and environmental value and therefore provides detailed disclosures on the website @ and in singleissue papers @ @.
A summary disclosure is in any event provided in the Sustainability Report.
To define the scope of the issues identified, all impacts– positive and negative – that the issue might have on stakeholders or in the reference context of its own value chain were considered. In particular, the risks and opportunities deriving from the issue were taken into account, as were the potential to influence Group strategy in the long term, with a view to assessing the broader sustainability context.
The assessments were shared with the Delegates from the Chief Risk Officer Governance Area, identifying the reporting structure and management disclosures associated with each issue (both within the Bank and in the external environment), with the aim of providing all stakeholders with a comprehensive representation of our performance (see GRI - Impact boundaries @).
ANALYSIS OF MATERIAL ISSUES IN THE WIDER CONTEXT OF SUSTAINABILITY
In the presentation of the Report’s contents, Intesa Sanpaolo aims to show how business activities help to improve or deteriorate social, economic and environmental conditions in a local, regional or global framework. To this end, it presents a concentric chart that shows the seven “material” macro-issues, that are the most significant ones according to the materiality analysis in relation to:
- risks and opportunities associated with each issue, which could have cross-cutting impacts on the strategies and business of Intesa Sanpaolo in the medium and long term;
- positive impacts that could generate shared long-term value for the Group, the environment and society in general.
IMPACT, RISKS AND OPPORTUNITIES
(*) ESG refers to Environmental Social and Governance Risks
(**) SRI (Social Responsible Investments) investors: investors that not only assess the financial performance of businesses, but also their commitment to society and the environment