When we talk about Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG), it has an impact on just about any industry. Have you ever wondered how does a telecommunications company implement ESG in their organisation?
Smart Investor talks to Azzahraa Annuar, FCA, Director of Governance Risk & Compliance, edotco Group. She is also one of the speakers at the prestigious ESG Evolve 2022 conference that Kexxel Group is organizing in KL on 6-8 December. We will talk more about the conference at the end. For now, let’s find out more about how edotco is pioneering ESG in terms of telco infrastructure in Malaysia.
edotco Group is the first and leading regional integrated telecommunications infrastructure services company in Asia. They specialise in end-to-end solutions in the tower services sector including co-locations, build-to-suit, energy, transmission and operations and maintenance (O&M).
Smart Investor: What does ESG mean to you? Why is important to your business and how does it impact your industry?
Azzahraa Annuar: It is not about what ESG means to me, but it is about what ESG means to us.
At edotco, ESG is central to how we do our business from planning to execution. To be a sustainable business, we believe that a strong governance is key to ensure our business is run in the most equitable manner.
We also believe that internet connectivity should be viewed as part of human right in today’s world. As such, we are passionate when it comes to taking care of the communities around our towers and even more passionate when it comes to our greatest asset, that is our people. We continue to innovate as investing in innovation is they key to net zero emissions.
Each component of ESG i.e. the E, the S and the G are equally important and must be addressed together as 1, and not separately.
SI: What are the key factors for successful ESG deployment?
AA: Culture culture culture.
At edotco, we believe in the mind, the heart and the hands. This means, we inculcate the culture of a sustainable world for the future, for the next generation in the minds of our people.
We hire passionate individuals who fit within edotco’s culture and core values to ensure our people have the heart of edotco.
And finally, when we build our towers, our products, we continue to innovate for best possible output.
SI: What are the challenges that you faced?
AA: In summary, we have two key challenges:
Firstly, macroeconomic challenges mean cost pressure continue to be central. We need to ensure we deliver a strong return for our shareholders amidst such challenging environment. Our supply chain is struggling, the communities around our towers are struggling. This impacts our operation tremendously.
Nevertheless, our engineers continue to innovate, and we manage to come up with LCS i.e., low cost structure in country like Bangladesh.
Secondly, whilst we are certain with our Scope 1 and Scope 2, we are still struggling with Scope 3. This will be an area of focus for edotco in 2023 to ensure our carbon emission calculations is based on international standard and continue to be validated independently. We will also be reviewing our supply chain as part of this initiative.
SI: What are the key trends you see gaining traction for ESG? What are the areas of growth amongst the pillars to look at in 2023?
Azzahraa Annuar: It depends on the side of the world you are in.
- In developed market, focus is more on governance
- In developing market, focus is more on environment
- And in underdeveloped market, focus is more on social
For edotco, we have done independent review to see what the areas are we need to focus on including materiality assessment. We will continue to focus on strengthening every pillar because we believe that all 3 are equally important.
“Our mind, our heart and our hands shape the sustainable world which we all dreamed of for our next generation”.Azzahraa Annuar, FCA, Director of Governance Risk & Compliance, edotco Group
ESG EVOLVE 2022: Driving Catalytic Change For Business Sustainability
edotco Group will share more insights at the ESG Evolve 2022 Driving Catalytic Change for Business Sustainability organized by Kexxel Group which will be held on 6-8 December in EQ Kuala Lumpur. Come and join us, see you there!