Sustainability a focus for companies' corporate offices and real estate holdings in Canada
WINNIPEG, Oct. 25, 2016 /CNW/ - Great-West Lifeco Inc. today announced the achievement of two significant accomplishments reflecting its commitment to sustainability across its Canadian operations:
- Great-West Lifeco has earned a position on CDP's 2016 Climate A List, placing it in the top 10% of companies globally; and
- GWL Realty Advisors has achieved a "Green Star" ranking for a second consecutive year, from the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) survey.
"We're pleased to be recognized as a Canadian leader for our commitment to environmental management," said Paul Mahon, President and CEO, Great-West Lifeco. "We understand the need to be constantly improving to reduce the environmental impact of our operations to help build a more sustainable future for generations to come."
CDP's Climate A List
As part of the CDP's climate change program, the company earned a position on the "A List" by disclosing high-quality data related to their carbon emissions and the management of climate change related risks and opportunities.
"We continue to look for ways to improve our environmental performance," said Stefan Kristjanson, President and Chief Operating Officer for Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life. "The gains we make are the result of employee buy-in, improvements to operational infrastructure, and effective environmental management by our real estate subsidiary, GWL Realty Advisors."
The companies' 'A' CDP score for 2016 ranks in the top 10% percent of CDP's Global submissions. 197 "A Listers" appear on the list, which has been produced at the request of 827 investors representing assets of USD $100 trillion.
CDP's annual global climate change report, along with the climate scores of all companies publicly taking part in CDP's climate change program this year, is available on CDP's website.
"Green Star" GRESB ranking
GWL Realty Advisors improved its position from the top 15% of 707 global participants in 2015 to the top 10% of 759 global participants in 2016. The company also scored well above the global average and the average for its North American peer group in each of the assessed categories.
GRESB is a leading global benchmark used by institutional investors to help understand real estate companies' environmental, social, and governance activities and the sustainability performance of their portfolios.
The 2016 GRESB survey grew by 7% in the number of submissions it received since last year to 759 management companies and funds from across the world. These participants represent over 66,000 assets worth USD $2.8 trillion, having grown by USD $500 billion since 2015. This trend affirms the continued importance of ESG issues to investors.
This strong performance of GWL Realty Advisors demonstrates a focus on operational excellence and top sustainability performance for clients and tenants.
"We are pleased to obtain a 'Green Star' rank and improve our scores across all GRESB aspects with our second submission," said Michele Walkau, Senior Vice-President, GWL Realty Advisors. "These strong results are a testament to the continued commitment to environmental, social, and governance practices by our employees, tenants and clients."
GWL Realty Advisors' sustainability activities and past year's performance are outlined in its 2015 Annual Review.
About Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life
Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life offer a broad portfolio of financial and benefit plan solutions, and serve the financial security needs of more than 12 million people across Canada. Responsible and ethical management is an intrinsic value of the companies and is essential to long-term profitability and value creation. As an Imagine Caring Company supporting the principles of corporate citizenship and benchmarks for community investment established by Imagine Canada, the companies donate a minimum of one per cent of average pre-tax profits to non-profit, charitable and community organizations each year. Learn more about the organization's corporate social responsibility.
About GWL Realty Advisors
GWL Realty Advisors Inc. is a leading real estate investment advisor providing comprehensive asset management, property management, development and specialized real estate advisory services to pension funds and institutional clients. GWL Realty Advisors manages more than $16.8 billion in assets including $1.0 billion in development projects across Canada. For details about GWL Realty Advisors Inc., visit www.gwlra.com.
About Great-West Lifeco
Great-West Lifeco Inc. is an international financial services holding company with interests in life insurance, health insurance, retirement and investment services, asset management and reinsurance businesses. Great-West Lifeco has operations in Canada, the United States, Europe and Asia through Great-West Life, London Life, Canada Life, Irish Life, Great-West Financial and Putnam Investments. Great-West Lifeco and its companies have approximately $1.2 trillion* in consolidated assets under administration and are members of the Power Financial Corporation group of companies.
Great-West Lifeco trades on the Toronto (TSX) stock exchange under the ticker symbol GWO. For more information visit www.greatwestlifeco.com.
* Assets as of June 30, 2016
SOURCE Great-West Lifeco Inc.
For further information: Marlene Klassen, APR, Assistant Vice-President, Communication Services, 204.946.7705