Sustainability Report 2010
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Economic

EconomicEconomic

Westfield Topanga, USWestfield Topanga, US

High quality shopping centres like those owned and managed by Westfield are powerful generators of economic activity – for investors, retailers and the wider community. 

Economic Value Generated and Distribution

As a publicly listed company for just over 50 years, Westfield Group has always focused on the creation of value for its stakeholders. 

Throughout its history the Group has adapted and evolved its structure to continually position itself for growth. An important aspect of this has been the Group’s intensive management style, which has ensured that operational practices managing a growing global portfolio of shopping centres has meant maximum efficiency and maximum returns. 

All this has contributed to Westfield’s position as one of the world’s leading integrated retail property groups, with strong financial capacity, assets under management of around $58 billion, balance sheet assets in excess of $37 billion and net equity of $17 billion. 

In the financial environment the Group focuses on creating returns for its investors through its efficient management of capital and assets. 

In the shopping centre environment, Westfield malls are a social and commercial hub of the local community. Every Westfield shopping centre is a place where people gather to trade, shop and work. At every centre a number of individual businesses operate as retailers, contractors and service providers and suppliers. 

The development or redevelopment of a Westfield centre generates its own financial impact through the creation of employment during construction and beyond, in new retail positions; through the economic stimulation of the local trade area, through increased retail spending and through the increased opportunity for suppliers and contractors to provide the Group with required services. 

Increasingly, the Group considers the environmental and social aspects of its business, in addition to the financial factors. 

The Group has always made economic investments in its communities, and in 2010 provided $6.8 million worth of financial support to Westfield communities around the world. Some of this was through cash donations, and the remainder in-kind through strategic partnerships that included volunteer Westfield staff and the provision of space in shopping centres to support local community associations.

corporate

Corporate Governance at Westfield*

The Westfield Group through its Board and executives recognises the need to establish and maintain governance policies and practices which reflect the requirements of market regulators and participants, and the expectations of securityholders and others who deal with the Westfield Group.

The Westfield Group Board has established a number of committees to assist in the oversight and fulfilment of its responsibilities. Management committees also exist to support the operation of the Board committees.

In particular, the Board Risk Management Committee has been established with the objective of assisting the Board by monitoring and reviewing the Group’s corporate policies for identifying and managing relevant risks associated with the business of the Group and the adequacy of the Group’s practices and procedures on implementing these policies.

The Board Risk Management Committee is supported by the Executive Risk Management Committee which has been delegated specific risk-related responsibilities including implementing appropriate systems for confirming compliance with all relevant laws and other regulatory obligations.

The risk management team oversees the Group’s risk and compliance management frameworks. These frameworks support the identification, development and implementation of of risk management and compliance procedures across the Group’s business. 

In 2010, Westfield received no significant fines or non-monetary sanctions for non-compliance with any laws and regulations including those relating to the environment and the provision of products and services.

 

* Westfield has defined the benchmark for significant fines as $100,000.