TORONTO, May 12, 2023 /PRNewswire/ – Equitable Bank (Canada’s Challenger Bank™) today released two comprehensive reports on the strategies and actions it is taking to reduce its carbon footprint, invest in Canadian society, advance its place as one of Canada’s best places to work and leverage its industry-leading digital capabilities to give underbanked communities better service.
“We recognize that it will take a serious-minded and collaborative effort to fulfill our purpose of changing banking to enrich people’s lives and our ESG Performance Report and Public Accountability Statement capture both the spirit and the details of our journey in a transparent, no-nonsense way,” said Andrew Moor, President and Chief Executive Officer. “We encourage all of our stakeholders to review these reports and assess our level of commitment as befits our place as Canada’s 7th largest bank.”
For the Environment, Equitable Bank noted that it is aligned with Canada’s transition to a net-zero economy and:
- Initiated its first qualitative climate scenario analysis to identify the Bank’s top physical and transition risks
- Confirmed that its loan portfolio has, on average, low to medium exposure to physical climate hazards under three climate scenarios and time horizons, outlined financing initiatives for green and net-zero assets, and noted it has developed a Sustainable Bond Framework to enable future issuances of green, social and sustainability bonds
- Reported its absolute Scope 1 and 2 emissions (and intensity) and maintained carbon neutrality in both scopes (as it has since 2020)
- Remained the only Schedule I Canadian bank to report all applicable categories of Scope 3 emissions from the entire portfolio (excluding Concentra) for the second year
- Sought Independent Third-Party Limited Assurance on Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions
For its Social pillar, Equitable Bank:
- Served 308,286 Canadians with its award-winning EQ Bank digital platform, which offers everyday banking functionality without fees, plus a competitive savings rate
- Introduced the free EQ Bank Card that facilitates zero-fee foreign transactions and fee-free ATM withdrawals in Canada
- Funded 138 multi-unit residential properties across Canada with total loans of $2.1 billion through CMHC’s MLI Select and predecessor affordable housing programs
- Addressed the financial needs of Canadian seniors and those planning to retire through its now $1 billion reverse mortgage/insurance policy lending business
- Advanced its inclusion, diversity, equity, accessibility, and anti-racism work in support of workforce engagement
- Embraced Concentra Bank’s Empowering Your Community partnership with credit unions
For Governance, Equitable Bank:
- Added a shareholder advisory vote on its approach to executive compensation as part of its 2023 annual meeting of shareholders
- Appointed three new Directors with governance, risk management, technology, senior executive leadership, and retail banking experience as part of planned succession
- Maintained strong Board diversity (42% of the independent directors self-identify as women, 17% self-identify as visible minorities/racialized peoples)
The Bank’s new Public Accountability Statement highlights activities undertaken to push the boundaries of what smart banking looks like for Canadians, as well as what Canada’s Challenger BankTM is doing to invest in people and communities.
“When I reflect on 2022, I feel great pride in how we delivered on our purpose of driving change in Canadian banking to enrich people’s lives,” added Mr. Moor. “It’s that purpose that inspires us to innovate and behave in ways that add value to our employees, our customers so that banking is easier, less costly and more enjoyable for them, and our communities so that they become even better places to live and work.”
The 2022 ESG Performance Report and Public Accountability Statement can be accessed on the ESG webpage of our Investor Relations website.
About Equitable Bank
Equitable Bank—Canada’s Challenger Bank™—is a wholly owned subsidiary of EQB Inc., which trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: EQB) (TSX: EQB.PR.C) and serves more than 515,000 customers. Equitable Bank’s wholly owned subsidiary Concentra Bank supports Canadian credit unions and their more than 6 million members. With nearly $105 billion in combined assets under management and administration, Equitable Bank has a clear mandate to drive change in Canadian banking to enrich people’s lives. Founded more than 50 years ago, Canada’s Challenger Bank™ provides diversified personal and commercial banking, and through its digital EQ Bank platform (eqbank.ca) has been named the best bank in Canada on the Forbes World’s Best Banks 2021, 2022 and 2023 lists. Please visit eqbank.investorroom.com for more details.
SOURCE Equitable Bank