One of the top priorities for Arca Continental is to create and maintain long-term relationships with individuals, groups or organizations that can contribute to our company’s development. We have established constant and direct communication to encourage an open and transparent dialogue with these stakeholders, to understand better their expectations and concerns, and to address them proactively. The first step in developing our strategy was to assess how we relate to the development and interests of the communities. This exercise helped us determine the material issues for our company. Afterwards, we analyzed how maturing these issues contributes to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and we held several feedback meetings with opinion leaders, our peers, academics, authorities and NGOs, among others. This enabled us to clearly understand what we must do, how we have to do it, and how we need to communicate it.

In 2014, we administered more than 1,100 surveys to both internal and external stakeholders in Mexico, Ecuador and Argentina. The primary purpose of this exercise was to determine the comparative relevance of the different areas of sustainable development, including the environment, labor issues, Human Rights, community development and product responsibility.

The topics included in the survey were selected on the basis of guidelines such as GRI, ISO28000 and SA8000, which resulted in the identification of the 20 such topics our stakeholders consider to be most important.

In 2015, we made an exhaustive analysis of the impact of our efforts under the previously identified topics, through working sessions in which top executives from diverse areas of Arca Continental graded the social, environmental and economic impact of each one in particular. The purpose of this second exercise was to identify the group of issues seen to be most relevant by our stakeholders in which the company can have a transcendental impact. The result of this exercise became our list of material topics.

Materiality 2015

These topics are continuously evaluated by the Sustainability Executive Committee to assure their correct implementation and impact. Moreover, most of these topics are linked to specific objectives to be reached by 2020.

In 2015, we decided to align our report to the then recently launched United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In fact, we were one of the first companies in Latin America to receive GRI recognition for aligning our report to the SDGs.

In 2016, we created a maturity model to identify the SDGs where we could have a significant and positive impact. As a result of this exercise, we generated a list of areas where Arca Continental can make a significant contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals. In accordance with our vision of using stakeholder dialogue as a way to develop our sustainable development strategy, we created a survey to ask the community in general to prioritize the topics that contributed to the SDGs.

After analyzing more than 500 responses from our communities in Mexico, Ecuador, Peru and Argentina, we were able to identify the particular Sustainable Development Goals in which people would like to see the company have a positive impact.