Strategic risks

 

Implats’ risk management sets out to achieve an appropriate balance between reward and the risks associated with any business activity.

Our approach to risk management is consistent with the definition of risk, as stated by the global risk management standard, ISO 31000:2009: “effect of uncertainty on objectives”. This creates a clear link with strategic objectives and therefore requires an objective-based approach. Our aim is to continue to embed a risk management approach throughout the Group’s business-related activities. Success in this process will result in the following outcomes:
  • The Board and senior managers can make informed decisions regarding the trade-off between risk and reward
  • Strategic growth opportunities can be pursued with greater speed, robustness and confidence for the benefit of Implats and its shareholders
  • All stakeholders can have greater confidence that the Group’s strategic objectives will be achieved
  • Business decisions can be made within the context of the Group’s risk appetite and risk tolerance levels
  • The Group can manage the risks associated with non-tangible assets such as employees, customers, partners, other stakeholders, intellectual and knowledge capital, brand, processes and systems, just as comprehensively as it manages physical and financial assets.

This approach encourages ownership by giving each business unit of Implats the ability to control the pace of implementation within set timeframes. The responsible individuals are held accountable for the achievement of their implementation plans. This also implies an approach that gives credit for, consolidates and builds upon what has already been achieved.

Arising from this process are a series of objective-based risk assessments (ORAs) which cover approximately the top 60 activities of the Group. Each risk identified, and its associated controls, has a clearly defined line management owner.


Ongoing review ensures that the information remains relevant. Factors that may affect consequences and the likelihood of an outcome, as well as those that affect the suitability or cost of treatment options may change. Implats therefore repeats the risk management cycle regularly. All information is captured into the Group risk repository system, feeding into the Group risk profile. Risk reports are presented to the appropriate bodies and escalated as required, either to the Excom (monthly) or Audit and Risk Committee, and Board (quarterly).

The Implats Risk Management Process

  • Establishing the context includes determining key objectives, key stakeholders and their interests, and considering all external and internal factors (from cultural and perceptual to regulatory and global)
  • Identifying the risk entails establishing both source and cause, and evaluating all possible consequences
  • Analysing risk – what does this mean for our objectives?
  • Risk evaluation encompasses determining the risk rating (by severity, exposure and frequency) using standard Implats tables, identifying controls (existing or new) and prioritising risks
  • Treating risk requires considering all options to establish the most appropriate response for every risk identified (avoid, change probability of exposure and/or frequency, transfer, retain)

Issues which are regarded as material risks for the Group flow out of this process as a consequence.

The Group risk profile identifies the following key risks:
CLASSIFICATION OF GROUP STRATEGIC RISKS – JUNE 2011
  High potential impact issues       Medium potential impact issues       Lower potential impact issues  
  Safety       Growth       Asset reliability  
  Effective people       Infrastructure       Cash preservation  
  Employee health       Mineral Resource management       Suppliers and logistics  
  Environment       Unit costs        
  Country/Political – South Africa and Zimbabwe              
  Project delivery              
  Production              
  Supply and demand (including metal prices)             
  Rand/Dollar exchange rate              

Note: These risk issues are classified according to their potential impact on the achievement of Group strategic objectives over the five year planning period. Taken as individual risk categories, all are significant and require ongoing attention from management – the intention here is to indicate the relative ranking of each category.