The risk management system implemented by Astaldi Group is based on a concept of risk taken as an integral part of the generation of value and is deeply rooted in the Group’s decision-making process. Our successful risk management is aimed at exploiting business opportunities by encouraging future growth and, at the same time, safeguarding the value creating at date.
Taking measured risks, ensuring that the Company’s risk profile is consistent with its strategic objectives, is a core Management responsibility. With a view to achieving this, in compliance with the provisions contained in the Italian Stock Exchange’s Code of Conduct (Art. 7 – Internal Audit System and Risk Management) safeguarding shareholders, the Corporate Risk Management Department was established in 2010 and it is responsible for assisting the management in the decision-making process.
The ERM model
In order to guarantee ongoing optimization of risk management trends, also in light of the financial markets’ increasing focus on these issues, the Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Model, has been implemented also through diffusion and development of risk management related issues within the Group, with the aim of strengthening and standardizing the risk culture within the company, integrating and developing an analysis method, assessment and management of risks at different Group levels (enterprise, country, contract) and therefore minimizing the different risk profiles which can be singled out within the Group’s complete business cycle.
The ERM model takes the form of a system which is able to create value and competitive advantage by analyzing risk factors and assessing their impact on Group performance, allowing for knowledgeable undertaking of risks and mitigation of any negative consequences of these.
The Board of Directors of 9 March 2016, has approved the first Risk Appetite Statement which is a fundamental document made up of critical constituents: top risk categories, risk appetite and risk tolerance. This document identifies 5 top risk categories meaning the main sources of critical issues in achieving the Business Plan targets recognized by the Group’s management as typical and recurrent for its reference business segments. For each category has been defined a risk appetite, namely the level of risk the company is willing to undertake when performing its business. Risk tolerance are defined or quantified as the maximum amount of risk that the organization is technically able to assume when overcoming the risk appetite.
The defined statement provides the organization with rigor when setting strategic and budget objectives, selecting new projects and assessing entry into new markets.
Over the Top risk categories
Financial Structure-related risks
This category specifically includes risks linked to the possibility that a business is unable to meet its financial obligations arising from contractual undertakings and, more generally from its financial liabilities, as well as default of specific covenants, i.e. binding clauses for the Group which access to specific sources of financing depends on, upon penalty of withdrawal of the loan or renegotiation at less favorable conditions). The Group also focuses on the potential consequences of the extreme volatility of the currency markets it operates in, and considering the Group’s high level of currency exposure, it adopts control measures with suitable hedging operations (natural and non-natural hedging) in order to mitigate possible exchange rate and interest rate fluctuation which can be an additional key risk factor for the achievement of international growth targets.
The major inclination for internationalization which has always been a hallmark of the Group’s commercial development policies has entailed and still entails the obligation of assessing the set of risks arising from economic, political and social events (hence not dependent on Astaldi) which are able to negatively affect earnings and protection of the value of the Group’s assets. The Group has set tolerance levels for the so-called Country Risk, set down in the Risk Appetite Statement, which take into account the aforementioned international diversification.
The increasing complexity of works performed and/or opportunities for sharing project risks is linked to the decision to adopt project management models involving partnerships with other operators in the reference segment. In compliance with this approach and in keeping with the Risk Appetite Statement which set tolerance levels and appetite regarding partner management-related risks, the Group adopts a preliminary partners selection process performed on the basis of business criteria (technical capacity, experience in reference business segment, qualifications held), income statement criteria (recent turnover and margins) and financial criteria (levels of debt, financial liquidity), also taking into account information obtained via legal checks (absence of pending lawsuits, disqualifications for the legal representative and investigations underway regarding crimes against the P.A. both in Italy and abroad), checking of ethics/honorability and checking of governance models adopted.
Human resources-related risks
The increasing complexity of works, both in terms of volumes and type and the diversity of political and economic contexts which, in relation to the partnerships the company finds itself working with, make it necessary to be able to rely on resources, especially for key positions which, in addition to guaranteeing availability within a suitable timeframe, also ensure high levels of technical and specialist skills and know-how.
Sustainability and QHSE-related risks
A clear CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policy can have a positive impact on the investment choices of institutional investors, with a resulting increase in the value generated by Group activities. However, CSR targets which fail to be met, such as accidents and/or breach of HSE regulations can expose the Group to risk as regards reputation. Moreover, some markets are excluded to companies with a bad track record as regards QHSE issues (QHSE Compliance). In order to control these types of risks, the Group has adopted a QHSE management system, certified by independent third-parties.
A constant monitoring activity, with the involvement of company management, is carried out on the 5 top risk categories. This activity aims, among other things, to verify and ensure the alignment of top risks at the levels set by the Risk Appetite Statement and reporting to the management the opportunity to revise the top risks and their tolerance thresholds, to reflect changing in business conditions and goals.
The increasingly key role of the attentive and consolidated risk management policies the Group has adopted, becoming a genuine asset shared within the company, translates into flexibility and the ability to promptly react to the different reference contexts the Group operates within.
The presence of a structured RM system can enhance company reputation – demonstrates to shareholders, stakeholders and the market in general, that the organization has good corporate governance, a proactive risk management approach and that its key business drivers have been determined with risk appetite in mind.