The RO Group announces that it has appointed Ana Bajri as its first Head of Sustainability. A technical expert in the property sector, Ana's experience lies in real estate and the built environment, with a strong record of understanding and navigating ESG issues in a commercial environment.
Ana joins the RO Group from Countrywide Surveying Services where she has been responsible for creating and implementing sustainability strategies and the integration of ESG principles across the business. Her key successes included developing and leading programmes to upskill over 500 surveyors on energy efficiency and delivering and presenting a suite of webinars on sustainability, net zero carbon and green mortgages.
Prior to that she was a Senior Technical Manager also at Countrywide, where she drove compliance and managed risks for the surveying division, and was responsible for product innovations, desktop valuations and sustainability. She consulted with lenders on sustainability issues, specifically around climate change. She also ensured the successful adoption of industry standards in surveys and valuations, including the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Home Survey Standard.
Ana joined Countrywide from RICS where she worked for close to a decade. As Associate Director, International Property Standards she worked on sustainability and environmental matters. Notably, she led the development of the RICS Responsible Business Framework - a global best practice document which provides an approach towards embedding ESG considerations into the management of real estate, in alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs) to minimise negative impacts on society and the environment. She also developed the sustainability strategy for RICS and advised on ESG commitments.
Under UK government proposals, every commercial building, whether it be an office, shop, or warehouse, must have an energy performance certificate rating of C by 2027. The RO Group is already committed to exceeding these targets following its legal as well as its moral obligations around sustainability across all Group activities, and the appointment of Ana further demonstrates that commitment.
Edward Rowlandson, Group Managing Director, explains:
"We place sustainability at the heart of what we do. Our various projects are always carefully considered from an ESG perspective. Many of our commercial activities have environmentalism at their core, such as the development of a solar farm in the vicinity of Milton Keynes, and many of the companies we have invested in through our venture capital business ROCP. Another example is our new commercial office development at Si/bury House, also in Milton Keynes, which we intend to make the most sustainable office building in the city. This activity aligns with our Group's wider carbon reduction policies, guidelines and strategies, all of which will be developed further by Ana. I would like to extend a very warm welcome to her and wish her every success in her new role."
Ana Bajri, newly appointed Head of Sustainability at the RO Group, added:
"Among its many sustainable endeavours, the RO Group has made notable investments across its diverse portfolio, which include renewable energy initiatives as well as cleantech businesses that not only improve the eco credentials of RO owned buildings, but also properties across the country. The various startups in which the Group has invested include companies which reduce heating-related carbon, and water and energy usage. This holistic approach by Edward and the team, and their progressive approach to sustainability, sets them apart in the industry and this is one of the key things that attracted me to the role. I am delighted to be joining the Group and to help lead the next phase of development of our sustainability initiatives."