Sustainable strategies contribute to strong performance
Niam’s ambition is to be the leading real estate private equity firm in Northern Europe – the partner of choice – and an important part of achieving this goal is our focus on sustainability initiatives. Our commitment is reflected in our sustainability statement which states:
“To be a highly efficient manager for the benefit of clients and colleagues, Niam will continuously improve its business processes in compliance with laws and other regulations, reduce its environmental impact while enhancing long term profitability.”
Sustainability has been a part of our corporate and real estate investment strategy for a number of years as Niam believes there is a clear and decisive alignment between continuing to deliver top performance, and being one of the industry leaders on sustainability issues.
Niam takes an active role in the community
Niam actively manages its property investments and often times active property management has an impact on our tenants and the local community, especially when significant changes to the property or a new property development is proposed. To ensure a successful development process for our properties, Niam actively communicates with tenants, neighbors, city planners, politicians, authorities and investors in order to understand their interests and perspectives. Niam has a staff of experienced project development managers that utilizes an extensive network of architects and consultants, all from biologists to traffic planners, when developing our properties and forming the urban environment.
Niam is a property owner with the capacity and flexibility to operate both large scale city redevelopments as well as smaller building usage conversions. Niam is currently in the process of creating up to 1,000 apartments in the greater Stockholm area, a region with a great undersupply of housing where private investors such as Niam are needed to meet the challenges of a growing city.
Niam also actively supports:
BRIS, a children’s rights organization. The goal of BRIS’ support services is to strengthen the rights of children and young people and improve their living conditions.
- A drug-free Sweden (ENS 2000), a politically and religiously unaffiliated non-governmental organization that aims to provide Swedish schools with access to professional, up-to-date and free information regarding drugs, drug abuse and prevention programmes.
- ECPAT, a non-profit network dedicated to protecting children from all forms of commercial sexual exploitation.
- Stockholms Stadsmission, a nonprofit organization that conducts activities for people in homelessness and abuse, children, adolescents and the elderly.
Focus on transparency and adopting global standards
Although our primary business is managing real estate investment funds, Niam understands the importance of striving for continuous improvement and communicating openly and transparently towards investors, regulatory agencies and other key stakeholders. Niam participates in the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) in order to properly measure and communicate our sustainability efforts. We also support the initiatives of the European Association for Investors in Non-Listed Real Estate Vehicles (INREV) and we certify our operating processes according to the International Standard Organization (ISO).
GRI is a non-profit organization that promotes economic sustainability and produces one of the world's most prevalent standards for sustainability reporting. Niam is committed to this initiative and produces annually a Sustainability Report which communicates our focus on sustainable and responsible investments. The 2013 Sustainability Report can be downloaded here.
In addition to compliance with the GRI, Niam also annually reports to the GRESB. GRESB’s mission is to enhance and protect shareholder value by evaluating and improving sustainability best practices in the global real estate sector. GRESB is used both by Niam and by Niam’s investors to evaluate the funds in relation to the relative benchmark with the aim to improve the overall sustainability performance. Niam actively works to complete the benchmark survey and target improvement areas once the results are communicated. Additionally, we have individual discussions with our investors who are GRESB members to discuss Niam’s sustainability efforts and our focuses on improvements.
Niam has been a long-term member with INREV. INREV’s goal is to improve transparency, professionalism and best practices across the real estate sector, making the asset class more accessible and attractive to investors. As we support INREV’s goal, we continue to sponsor its annual conference, work with best efforts in combination with the investors’ best interest to integrate INREV’s recommended reporting initiatives and volunteer our time to serve on INREV committees.
Pursuant to the law on alternative investment fund managers (AIFMD), Niam AB is authorized and regulated by the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority to conduct alternative investment fund operations. Niam is also registered as an Investment Adviser with the SEC in accordance to the Dodd-Frank Act.
Niam's commitment to rigorous internal controls and risk management is reflected in our Management System where our operating processes are documented and reviewed regularly. The Management System is certified according to the ISO standard of quality, 9001:2004, and environment, 14001:2008. ISO is an international standard promoting the adoption of a process approach when developing, implementing and improving the effectiveness of a quality- and environmental management system including risk management, to enhance customer satisfaction and performance. The Environmental Management System assures that Niam establishes plans, which takes into account significant environmental aspects for each asset, and that Niam takes action during the ownership to ensure implementation of the plan. Our recent annual external audit was conducted by Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance (LRQA) and our recent annual internal audit was conducted by SWECO AB.