The commitment to sustainable development is part of our strategy at IRB Brasil RE, which maintains its own initiatives, support and partnerships with the purpose of building responsible relationships with society and all its stakeholders. Thus, it is in line with the role played by the reinsurance market in supporting the country’s economic growth.
In its relationship with society, it sponsors social, cultural and sports initiatives, mainly focused on contributing to the improvement of the lives of children, adolescents and the elderly, especially in terms of health care. In the environmental arena, despite the low impact of its activities, it seeks to use natural resources rationally and to appropriately dispose of the waste produced by its operation, in addition to demanding that suppliers of products and services follow these practices.
Regarding human capital management, it recognizes that differences and respect for others create a healthy and harmonious work environment that contributes to business growth.
The most relevant sustainability management issues, i.e. those that can cause more significant impacts on the business if they are not properly managed, were identified with the support of an assessment by Sustainalytics, a company that rates the sustainability of publicly held companies based on its environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance. For IRB, there are three main key issues: ESG/Finance Integration (which covers socio-environmental aspects and impacts, and responsible asset management, among others); Product Governance (responsible product offering, marketing practices, quality and safety); and Human Capital (diversity, non-discrimination, employee turnover, freedom of association and labor relations).
IRB is a member of the Geneva Association, which is a reference in strategically important research on risk management and insurance. The entity identifies fundamental trends and strategic issues in which insurance plays a substantial role and conducts discussions and research on topics such as climate change, population aging and digitalization, among others. Through research programs, regular publications and promotion of international meetings, the Association fosters an understanding of the risks inherent in the business, acting as a producer and disseminator of information.
The Company is part of the Sustainability Committee of the National Confederation of Insurance Companies (CNSEG), an organization that discusses sustainability issues in the insurance and reinsurance market in Brazil. The Company is also in the process of signing the PSI – Principles for Sustainable Insurance, a Finance Initiative of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP FI).
Due to the nature of its operations and the low materiality of socio-environmental impacts of its activities, the Company does not yet have a formal socio-environmental policy and has been working to instill a culture of sustainability into its workforce, with a diagnosis of its strengths and gaps, as well as develop sustainability initiatives.
IRB works with its clients to address any detected risks, collaborating and suggesting measures to avoid environmental, engineering or any other impacts that may be identified. As the Company’s business is essentially to prevent the occurrence of claims, the underwriting team carries out periodic risk inspection visits, designed to detect potential risks and work with clients to anticipate and mitigate any damage to assets, accidents or liabilities.
In addition to the factors inherent in the business (scenario, underwriting, operational, market, credit and image), IRB Brasil RE’s Risk Management Policy considers socio-environmental aspects that can impact the Company’s performance, damage its image and reputation and cause financial losses (the document can be accessed at https://ri.irbre.com/ptb/estatuto-social-politicas-codigos). The risks to which the Company is exposed are detailed in the Reference Form (https://ri.irbre.com/ptb/central-de-resultados).
The Vice-Presidency of Risks and Compliance is responsible for monitoring and controlling IRB’s risks, which are assessed by the Board of Directors every six months, the Audit Committee and the Risk Management Committee every quarter and the Company’s Executive Board regularly. Every year, all employees must attend mandatory risk training courses, such as the insurance and reinsurance business, prevention of money laundering and terrorism financing, ethics and conduct, governance, risks and compliance, fraud, corruption and conflict of interest, operational risks, etc.
The Compliance Policy is designed to ensure the adequacy, strengthening and efficient functioning of IRB Brasil RE’s Internal Controls System, with activities, operations, products and services in compliance with the applicable legislation, as well as with internal regulations and demands. The document can be accessed at https://ri.irbre.com/ptb/estatuto-social-politicas-codigos. The Compliance Manual establishes the responsibilities of the different areas of IRB Brasil RE, in order to ensure that these controls are effective, as well as define guidelines for reporting any non-compliance.
The Company also has an Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorism Financing Policy, approved by the Board of Directors.
To mitigate any risks inherent in money laundering and fraud, as well as the control of relationships with Politically Exposed Persons, the following activities are carried out:
Know Your Customer (KYC) – Checking whether companies have received negative media coverage or have sanctions and Politically Exposed Persons (PEP). Customers are only approved after analyses carried out by the Compliance area, which conducts a survey on the customer’s activities.
Know Your Employee (KYE) – Designing and monitoring Compliance training; monitoring the behavior and conduct of employees who are PEPs; and checking whether candidates for strategic positions have received negative media coverage, have sanctions or are Politically Exposed Persons.
Know Your Supplier (KYS) – Checking whether companies have received negative media coverage or have sanctions and Politically Exposed Persons. Suppliers are only approved after analyses carried out by the Compliance area.
Customer and supplier companies are classified into risk levels for differentiated monitoring. This check is carried out periodically and involves the entire chain of customers and suppliers. For employees, this check is carried out periodically and covers first-degree relatives.
The ethical culture is considered fundamental for the Company’s sustainable and transparent growth. This process is based on two documents: the Code of Ethics and the Integrity Program, designed to ensure high behavioral standards in IRB Brasil RE’s relations with all its stakeholders. The Ethics Committee deals with issues that are in conflict with the provisions of the two documents.
The Integrity Program aims to effectively and efficiently ensure compliance with the entire regulatory framework and good practices to which the Company is exposed, as well as help face the challenges of a competitive and globalized market, with agility and transparency in its actions.
The Code of Ethics and Conduct establishes general guidelines for behavior that must be adopted by management, employees and service providers, in order to guarantee high ethical standards in the Company’s decisions and activities. The document is also a guide for employees’ relationships with co-workers and other stakeholders (shareholders, investors, customers, suppliers, competitors and the press) and for professional and personal conduct. For employees, annual training on corruption and bribery is mandatory.
The Integrity Program and the Code of Ethics and Conduct are available at (https://ri.irbre.com/ptb/estatuto-social-politicas-codigos).
The Company commits to promoting the development of society through its own initiatives, support and partnerships in the execution of social responsibility projects. It also sponsors socio-cultural initiatives with tax incentive funds. Investments are focused on promoting health and quality of life, encouraging sports and supporting education and culture, with the support of employee volunteers.
IRB supports eight initiatives focused on health, which are undertaken by institutions such as FioCruz (RJ), Fundação do Câncer (RJ), Associação de Pais e Amigos dos Excepcionais (Apae – RJ and SP), Hospital de Amor (formerly Hospital de Câncer de Barretos – SP), Hospital Angelina Caron (Curitiba – PR) and Hospital Pequeno Príncipe (Curitiba – PR). In 2019, these projects benefited approximately 421,000 people, including children, young people and the elderly.
With sports sponsorships, it seeks to increase social impact through sport. In 2019, IRB supported two projects:
- Sem Barreiras (Without barriers), which aims to offer, in a single location, three Olympic sports – judo, athletics and volleyball – to approximately 170 children and young people from the Sambódromo region, in downtown Rio de Janeiro, and in the Estácio neighborhood. The initiative is undertaken in partnership with volleyball medalist Adriana Samuel.
- Reação Escola Faixa Preta (Reação Black Belt School), from Instituto Reação, which promotes human development and social inclusion through sport and education, supporting judo athletes from sports initiation to high performance. The project benefits 1,600 children, adolescents and young people in nine centers in the city of Rio de Janeiro.
On the third front, it sponsors cultural programs benefiting schools, social institutions and socially vulnerable groups in the city of Rio de Janeiro. Priorities include restoration and maintenance of museums, major exhibitions and music projects. They include:
- Museu do Amanhã (Museum of Tomorrow), an initiative that produces knowledge through innovation and sustainability, two important values for the Company. In 2019, there were seven guided tours to the museum, bringing more culture and knowledge to 210 children, adolescents and adults. The support included the creation of a museum app, which provides visitors with augmented reality experiences. In 2019, the museum received approximately 836,000 visitors.
- Museu de Arte do Rio (Museum of Art of Rio – MAR), a symbol of the revitalization of the Rio de Janeiro port area, which has a collection of more than 30,000 items and promotes exhibitions, events and educational programs related to the history and culture of the city; and
- Pinacoteca de São Paulo, the oldest art museum in the city of São Paulo, holds exhibitions of its renowned collection of Brazilian art and temporary exhibitions of national and international artists, in addition to hosting a comprehensive and inclusive educational program.
- Sponsorship of the Rock in Rio music festival, which attracted an audience of 700,000 people in 2019.
Employees engage in social initiatives designed to build a better and more cooperative society. With this focus, two campaigns were carried out in 2019: the sponsorship of almost 160 children, who received a complete kit of school supplies, and a food drive for victims of the storms that hit the city of Rio de Janeiro. A donation was made to the blood bank of Santa Casa de Misericórdia of Rio de Janeiro, saving 560 lives, and a bazaar (Bazar Solidário) was organized for the benefit two institutions.
In December 2019, the Volunteer Program – which was created in 2016 – was closed down and the volunteers became social multipliers, actively participating in the design, development, planning and implementation of social projects supported by the Company.
The selection, engagement and assessment of suppliers is based on the principles of fairness and transparency, not allowing any kind of favoritism or discrimination. Technical, economic and integrity aspects are evaluated, in order to ensure plurality, competition and relationships with companies that ensure the quality and the best price of the contracted products and services. The Know Your Supplier (KYS) requires that a due diligence process be carried out before contracts are signed. Depending on the relevance of the contract, an in loco visit is made to evaluate the facilities and the quality of the staff and systems.
Contracts include confidentiality and conflict of interest clauses. Some relevant aspects are checked during the due diligence process, such as the Register of Ineligible and Suspended Companies (Cadastro Nacional de Empresas Idôneas e Suspensas – CEIS) and the National Register of Punished Companies (Cadastro Nacional de Empresas Punidas – CNEP), negative media coverage, government severance fund (FGTS) and labor debts, among others.
Due to the nature of its operations and the low materiality of socio-environmental impacts resulting from its activities, as well as the activities of its suppliers, the Company has not defined a specific socio-environmental policy for selecting and assessing suppliers, nor a specific self-assessment standard for sustainability practices (human rights, environment).
In order to ensure full respect for human rights, contracts with suppliers include the need to observe the Company’s Code of Ethics and Conduct, which requires compliance with labor, social security and tax legislation, in addition to the prohibition to use child or slave labor. A compliance questionnaire is applied to suppliers to check if labor relations are in compliance with the law.
The Code of Ethics and Conduct also requires suppliers to adopt good environmental conservation practices, even if these activities do not have a relevant environmental impact.
In addition, contractual clauses require service providers to comply with legal and regulatory requirements related to the Prevention of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism, Fraud, Corruption and Conflict of Interest.
The Human Resources Policy requires the Company to create a diversified and stimulating work environment, in which interpersonal and intersectoral relationships enable the achievement of common interests. Team spirit is one of the Company’s values, which rejects any act of discrimination.
At the end of 2019, 446 professionals worked at the Company, 381 of whom were in-house employees and 65 were outsourced workers. Among employees, 53% were men and 47% were women. Women hold 40% of management positions. The turnover rate stood at 10.2% in 2019 (19.9% in 2018).
The Code of Ethics and Conduct establishes that all internal or external relationships must be based on respect and transparency and rejects all instances of moral and sexual harassment and discriminatory practices with regard to color, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or discrimination of any other nature. An Ethics Committee is responsible for investigating allegations of moral and sexual harassment.
The Company supports freedom of association and it has maintained good relations with the union, without conflicts, strikes or stoppages in the past three years. IRB provides, upon request, the list of company employees and their e-mails to the union so that it can communicate with them.
A climate and engagement survey is carried out annually (the 2019 survey was carried out in the second half of the year) in order to ensure the adoption of policies and measures that promote the well-being of its employees. An independent company also conducts an annual assessment of the Company’s culture.
Attentive to the well-being of its employees, IRB conducts annual engagement campaigns, in partnership with the consulting firm Mercer. In 2019, IRB created an Engagement Committee, which involves different areas, perceptions and ideas to ensure a healthy work environment, with committed teams and employees.
A Quality of Life Program encourages the practice of sports and runs health campaigns, especially vaccination, in addition to ergonomic evaluation, among other programs. IRB hosts a lounge, where employees can read, play games and talk to one another. All employees have access to a health plan and a dental plan that can be extended to dependents. There is an executive check-up for management and an annual periodic exam for other levels.
To maintain and attract talents, IRB offers a benefit package including life insurance, meal vouchers, food vouchers, transportation vouchers and refund of tuition fees for the employees’ children, provided for in a collective bargaining agreement. Additionally, 91% of employees contribute to a private pension plan, which is co-sponsored by the Company.
Two social inclusion initiatives stand out:
- Hiring hearing-impaired people;
- The Young Apprentice program, designed to help young people enter the labor market, through technical and professional training. In 2019, 19 apprentices were hired as interns and 21% of them were hired as employees.
An annual performance evaluation cycle is carried out for all employees, following a model that enables them to receive performance insights from all perspectives: peers, internal clients, managers, subordinates, as well as their own self-evaluation. All evaluations are discussed in committees, which address the employees’ development needs, such as the need for internal and/or external training, foreign language courses and postgraduate, extension, specialization and master’s programs. IRB refunds 50% of tuition fees for undergraduate and postgraduate courses.
Periodic feedback is fundamental for professional growth and encouraged by the Company’s Human Resources department, which encourages managers to use effective techniques to appropriately perform this role.
In order to ensure the sustainability of business at times of transition, special attention is paid to the training of successors, encouraging the growth of professionals identified as potential successors through the Individual Development Plan.
IRB maintains a talent retention program, approved by the Board of Directors, designed to retain high-performance, high-potential employees who are difficult to replace.
Despite the low environmental impact of its operations, IRB Brasil RE is committed to the efficient management of natural resources and to reducing damage to the environment. Adopted measures include the digitization of physical processes, a waste recycling program, elimination of disposable plastic cups, the efficient use of water and electricity and the hiring of a certified company to dispose of electronic waste.
Employees are encouraged to reduce the consumption of water, energy, paper, plastic objects and office supplies, as part of initiatives designed to combat the waste of natural resources and contribute to reducing waste production. Each employee received a reusable water cup and a ceramic coffee mug. This initiative eliminated the consumption of more than 370,000 disposable plastic water cups and 110,000 disposable plastic coffee cups every year. Campaigns are periodically launched to reduce energy consumption, such as:
- Turn off the monitors at lunchtime, at night and on weekends.
- Always turn off the lights in the meeting rooms.
- Use the stairs instead of the elevator and disable the automatic elevator call in your badge.
In 2019, the Company’s headquarters building in Rio de Janeiro implemented an automation system that remotely monitors energy consumption. In a second phase, it will be possible to remotely turn lights on and off and switch on and off the air conditioner. IRB also plans to install a new system to control water use and detect waste.
The building also has a green roof, which reduces the internal temperature and the use of air conditioner (and, consequently, energy consumption) and provides acoustic isolation, in addition to absorbing toxic substances and releasing oxygen into the atmosphere, helping reduce urban pollution. Another differential is a bike racks with charging stations.
The Company’s office building in São Paulo is self-sustainable and certified with the silver Core Shell Leed (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) award granted by the Green Build Council. The building’s windows are designed to lower internal temperatures, thus reducing energy consumption, and other sustainable initiatives include rainwater reuse, full sewage treatment, bike racks and charging stations for electric vehicles.
IRB manages all its recyclable waste, having hired a specialized firm to collect and properly dispose of the materials, including necessary landfill disposals. A recycling cooperative also participates in this effort. IRB also stores and properly disposes of garden waste; it uses a specific storage area and has hired a specialized firm to collect and properly dispose of this material.
Another initiative carried out by the Company is the recycling of coffee capsules, which are dropped in special disposal containers next to all coffee machines. Thus, IRB seeks to reduce the waste impact caused by this object, which has become an issue in recent years.
Use of natural resources
IRB has taken different measures to reduce its consumption of natural resources.
- To save water, for example, the Company installed toilets with different outflow levels.
- The Company’s headquarters in Rio de Janeiro also received new lighting after the building’s retrofit project. Currently, 98% of light bulbs are LED (light-emitting diodes), which are more efficient than conventional bulbs.
- The building also has power-generating solar panels.
- The Company installed automated power controls, including smart air conditioner, which regulates temperature based on the number of people in the room. Air conditioners are turned off at 7:30 p.m. and lights are turned off at 10:00 p.m., and both are turned on again at 6:00 a.m. of the following day. Electricity is only turned on during the weekends upon prior request.
- At the beginning of 2019, an energy consumption app was installed to indicate energy consumption in real time in order to identify potential power leaks, and monitor and control energy consumption on each floor. The goal is to continue to enhance this tool to effectively control energy consumption.
To decrease greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the Company reduced employees’ air travel to attend meetings, including client meetings. Whenever a face-to-face visit is not necessary, employees use video conferencing tools for client meetings in Brazil and abroad.