1. Sustainability Objective
At Merlone Geier Partners (“MGP”), we are committed to corporate responsibility as a way to drive long term value for our investors, employees, tenants, and the communities in which we invest. Our sustainability policy is focused on three pillars: environmental; social; and governance (“ESG”).
- Environmental: Being a responsible citizen by focusing on resource management, operational efficiency, and redeveloping efficient and sustainable real estate assets.
- Social: Maintaining a professional culture of entrepreneurship, integrity, empowerment and engagement.
- Governance: Having an inclusive and transparent leadership team that sets high ethical standards for every facet of our business.
We believe integrating ESG practices within the fabric of our investment management process drives value for our investors in the long-run by mitigating risk from environmental matters, creating efficient and sustainable retail and mixed-use projects, and retaining and cultivating a talented team.
MGP strives to be a good steward of our environment and natural resources. At MGP we believe in reducing our usage of natural resources, sustainable building practices, and active clean-up of existing environmental issues.
We have a Sustainability Committee that works broadly across our organization to implement measurable initiatives to reduce our usage of natural resources. The committee is comprised of employees across multiple functions in the company and meets regularly to discuss goals, results, and new initiatives. We are committed to continuously reviewing and, when appropriate, revising our goals and initiatives.
Examples of existing practices include:
- LED retrofits to reduce electrical usage;
- Installation of SMART irrigation meters to reduce water usage;
- Textile recycling stations;
- Car charging stations;
- Sustainable office and property management practices; and
- Utilizing DocuSign or electronic signatures for contracts in lieu of paper.
We are committed to sustainable building practices and own a number of shopping centers that are California Green Code compliant. When appropriate, we are committed to pursuing LEED accreditation at our redevelopment and development projects. Please refer to the Building Sustainability section of our website for additional detail.
Assets that MGP acquires may have environmental issues from prior land uses. For example, there may be soil or ground water contamination from an automotive or dry cleaning tenant. Our in-house environmental team focuses on identifying, characterizing, and remediating these property-level environmental conditions. We work with outside consulting groups to resolve these issues in accordance with regulatory guidelines.
Our people are our greatest asset. We strive to have a positive impact on our team members’ lives and in the communities they call home. We make every effort to maintain our culture of entrepreneurship, integrity, empowerment and engagement. We build investor confidence and trust by setting high ethical standards and acting accordingly in every part of our business.
We value hiring and retaining top talent. In order to retain our talented team:
- We recognize and celebrate milestone employee anniversaries;
- We offer our employees a competitive suite of benefits from a fully-funded health plan to a robust 401(k) program; and
- We believe enhancing the expertise of our team members is important and support professional development, as appropriate, and host regular “Lunch & Learn” sessions where knowledge is shared across our team members.
We contribute to the betterment of communities we operate in through re-developing outdated centers into sustainable gathering places. We listen to the needs and wants of the community through community outreach during the entitlement phase. We also invest significant human and financial capital resources in order to improve and revitalize properties and we often say that “we buy problems and fix them.” Our broad strategy is aligned with a sustainability mindset, which aspires to create a more relevant and sustainable asset than the one we started with including, in many cases, the addition of parks and other green space.
We have an inclusive and transparent leadership team that reinforces our culture of entrepreneurship, integrity, empowerment, and engagement. Good governance starts from our leadership team and is embraced by our entire organization. All new employees review and acknowledge our Employee Handbook which outlines our policies and expectations.
We also have strong governance in our acquisition process. Risk management is an integral part of our due diligence process when we acquire assets. For each acquisition, our talented vertically-integrated team works together to evaluate the property. ESG factors are considered during the acquisitions process, including, but not limited to: environmental risks; accessibility to transit; compliance with local, regional and national regulations; energy supply; building safety and conditions; and social and economic demographics. The Investment Committee considers these due diligence findings in its decision-making process.
5. Updates to this Sustainability Policy
This Sustainability Policy may be updated from time to time in the sole discretion of MGP.
Effective Date – January 1, 2020