2020 was a challenging year for Acosta Verde and at the same time it has brought us the opportunity to focus on the most important aspects of our operation and growth to prioritize initiatives of our business strategy.
Committed to our vision of profitability and fulfilling Acosta Verde’s mission of generating value for our visitors, shareholders and investors, business partners, and collaborators, for the first time we are reporting initiatives and results on how we manage environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues, an initiative in line with market expectations regarding the relevance of ESG issues in the real estate sector.
This transparency effort is part of the process we started in 2020 to develop our ESG strategy, which includes the identification of our main stakeholders, the material issues for Acosta Verde, and on which we will base our strategy in the short and medium term, as well as the quantification of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Also, for the first time and to complement this Annual Report, in the coming weeks we will publish our first Sustainability Report following the main methodologies recommended by international ESG initiatives such as the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB).
In response to the contingency, we adopted initiatives to benefit our employees, visitors, and tenants.
Support for Tenants
At Acosta Verde, our tenants are very important for the business; more than tenants, we view them as our business partners with whom we build each Sendero® shopping center.
Due to the quarantine in March 2020, which entailed the partial closure of businesses during several months of the year, we provided support to our tenants by offering discounts and extensions for the payment of their leases.
In this manner we support the economy of our merchants, avoiding the shutdown of businesses and consequently the loss of jobs.
Protocol and Prevention Measures Implemented at Sendero Shopping centers
Our portfolio is focused on meeting the basic consumption needs of the population. Thanks to this, most of our tenants continued to operate as essential businesses, while nonessential tenants have resumed operations as required by the authorities.
For a safe return to our shopping centers, we developed a protocol for the implementation of measures and actions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Sendero® shopping centers, which was designed based on the guidelines established by local, state, and federal authorities.
The 313 employees who are part of our team in corporate offices and shopping centers are an essential part of our operation.
In 2020, many of Acosta Verde’s social initiatives were focused on the well-being of our employees.
We implemented a home office scheme with 134 corporate employees, while 179 shopping center employees continued to work on-site with all the required safety and hygiene measures in place.
Through constant communication campaigns, we focused on providing our employees with the recommendations, measures, and protocols defined in each work center to prevent COVID-19 infection.
On the other hand, to promote the physical and mental health of our employees, we offered physical training and workout programs to be performed at home or in the office, as well as talks on mental health by specialists.
Training and Professional Development
To keep our employees up to date on relevant industry topics, we implemented several training initiatives.
In addition, we organize GAV Talks and internal webinars to share with our team the experiences of other employees and experts on topics such as innovation, personal development, communication, leadership, and teamwork.
An essential element in providing quality services to our clients is to have employees who possess the knowledge and skills set for each job profile. For this reason, during the year we evaluated 270 employees, equivalent to 86% of our workforce.
Health and Safety
To have safe workplaces, we follow safety and risk materials to our visitors, among others. prevention standards in our corporate offices and in all our Sendero shopping centers, as well as guidelines for psychosocial risk factors defined in NOM 035.
We also implement programs aimed at improving the physical and mental health of our employees. For example, the DeXVida Program includes sports training activities, workout at work areas, personalized nutrition programs, medical check-ups, motivational talks, and mental training, among others, which are provided by specialists.
In all our work centers, we offer safety and prevention courses to strengthen compliance with safe working conditions in our shopping centers.
In all our Sendero® shopping centers we carry out community development programs based on local needs.
During 2020, together with Tierra de Artistas, A.C., we developed the Senderizarte program to positively impact the Santa Catarina municipality in Nuevo Leon through several volunteer activities centered on safety, health, environment, mobility, education, and family dynamics. Although lockdown measures interrupted the program halfway through, we were able to complete it online, without detracting from the value delivered to the community.
In addition, we carried out 52 social projects in all the communities where we operate, promoting social welfare through several initiatives such as job fairs, food pantry deliveries in needy communities, diverse activities with the National System for Integral Family Development (Sistema Nacional para el Desarrollo Integral de la Familia, DIF), breast cancer prevention awareness campaigns, and delivery of sanitation To have safe workplaces, we follow safety and risk materials to our visitors, among others.
In the common areas of our Sendero shopping centers and administrative offices we consumed 557 GJ of gasoline and diesel for vehicles and emergency plants, in addition to 18,699,807 kWh of conventional energy for lighting and air conditioning.
We consumed 370,026 m3 of water for the use of our tenants, common area services, and air conditioning equipment operation. To promote its responsible use, we reuse 80,967 m3 mainly for watering green areas, which represents 28% of our total consumption.
The waste generated in the properties comes from our visitors and our tenants’ operations. In 2020 we generated 4,371 tons of non-hazardous waste.