Huntington 2020 ESG Report Highlights Commitment to Shareholders, Customers, Colleagues and Communities

Report details Huntington's focus on community, economic and environmental sustainability, corporate governance, diversity and inclusion and social equity

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Aug. 12, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Huntington Bancshares Incorporated (Nasdaq: HBAN) has issued its 2020 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report, which highlights how Huntington helps people reach their goals, provides businesses with the resources to grow, and works to create prosperous and resilient communities.

The report shines a light on Huntington's 2020 commitments to shareholders, customers, colleagues, and communities, especially during a year of social and racial unrest, economic uncertainty and climate-related disruption.

"We're pleased to share how we're serving all of our stakeholders after a year of enormous challenges across the globe," said Steve Steinour, chairman, president and CEO. "Our purpose of making people's lives better, helping businesses thrive and strengthening the communities we serve continues to guide us in all we do. Stories about how our colleagues live our purpose every day are woven throughout the ESG report. This is especially meaningful as we examine our performance as a company and our larger role to be a catalyst for progress on economic and environmental sustainability, as well as social equity."

The ESG report provides a comprehensive review of Huntington's progress on performance dimensions that drive sustainable, long-term value for investors and support economic empowerment for customers and communities. Progress includes:

  • Increased spending with diverse suppliers to $161.1 million, accounting for 26.6% of total spending, supporting more than 2,350 jobs and representing $125 million in supported wages.
  • Implemented a bank-wide minimum wage increase from $16 per hour to $17 per hour, and has a strong, ongoing focus on colleague engagement, development, retention, and attraction.
  • Delivered positive operating leverage for the eighth consecutive year, earned a 9% return on tangible common equity, and increased the cash dividends paid to our shareholders for the tenth consecutive year.

Reporting Includes First-Time SASB Index and Second Annual TCFD Disclosure
Huntington's commitment to strong corporate governance is also reflected in its efforts to continually improve ESG reporting. This is Huntington's fifth ESG report, along with first-time reporting to the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) standards for Commercial Banks and Consumer Finance, and second annual reporting to the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) framework.

Additional 2020 areas of focus that enabled Huntington's response on behalf of its stakeholders include:

  • Investing in Communities and Driving Economic Impact: Huntington's commitments to financial education, to serving the underbanked, and economic inclusion programs provide a platform to help reduce poverty and drive economic empowerment for all.
       
    • Completed the $16.1 billion community development plan a year ahead of schedule and announced a new $40 billion Community Plan to address economic, social, environmental and racial equity challenges.
    • Provided $984 million in community development loans and investments.
    • Located 23.5% of branches in low-to-moderate income neighborhoods.
    • Assisted nearly 3,600 mortgage-distressed customers through the Home Savers program.
    • Partnered with more than 100 organizations to help address food security and other social determinants of health.
    • Provided more than 38,000 customers with relief, including loan deferrals and modifications, resulting in more than $6.8 billion of forbearance relief.
       
  • Helping Small Business Thrive: As the No. 1 originator of SBA 7(a) loans by volume in its footprint for twelve consecutive years, Huntington leveraged its expertise to develop creative, inclusive lending options and a variety of other features to assist with the recovery across the Midwest.
       
    • Funded approximately 84,000 loans to small- and medium-sized businesses, helping to keep thousands of people employed, totaling nearly $11.2 billion through the federal Paycheck Protection Program.
    • Launched Huntington Lift Local Business, a small business program that provides greater access to credit, business planning services, and educational resources, with a focus on minority-, woman-, and veteran-owned businesses.
    • Started 24-Hour Grace for Business, which gives additional time to cover overdrafts and returns on checking accounts. Huntington will automatically waive the overdraft fee as long as the customer makes a deposit during the next business day to resolve the overdraft or pending return item.
       
  • Building a Diverse Workforce and Governance Structure: Huntington is committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in its workforce, as well as to doing business with a diverse supplier base.
       
    • 38% board diversity
    • 66% total workforce diversity, and 45% diversity in middle and executive management 
    • Average base pay for women colleagues with the same job titles as men was 98% of that paid to men, and the average base pay for minority colleagues with the same job titles as non-minority colleagues was 99% of that paid to non-minorities.
    • 27% spend with diverse-owned companies
       
  • Promoting Environmental Stewardship: Huntington acknowledges that climate change is a serious issue and is committed to doing more to accelerate meaningful progress by reducing its corporate carbon footprint and addressing the environmental challenges faced by under-resourced communities.
       
    • Reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 35% since 2017 benchmark.
    • Established a renewable energy goal to shift 50% of its electricity usage to renewable sources by 2035.
    • Implemented 284 environmental sustainability projects.
    • Achieved 75 new ENERGY STAR certifications.
    • Provided comprehensive, customized solutions for businesses innovating in the green technology market.
    • Established climate risk governance and reporting structure, including the formation of a Climate Risk Management Working Group.

"Huntington is driven by its purpose and guided into action through its core values to be a top-tier performing bank that creates long-term value for its stakeholders," said Dave Porteous, Lead Director, Huntington Board of Directors. "ESG priorities play an important role at Huntington and across our industry. We're confident our enhanced strategy and ESG reporting transparency will further our brand and helps us stand out to our shareholders, customers, colleagues and communities. This report illustrates Huntington's belief that doing good is good for business."  

About Huntington
Huntington Bancshares Incorporated is a $175 billion asset regional bank holding company headquartered in Columbus, Ohio.  Founded in 1866, The Huntington National Bank and its affiliates provide consumers, small and middle–market businesses, corporations, municipalities, and other organizations with a comprehensive suite of banking, payments, wealth management, and risk management products and services.  Huntington operates more than 1,200 branches in 12 states, with certain businesses operating in extended geographies.  Visit Huntington.com for more information.

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, certain plans, expectations, goals, projections, and statements, which are not historical facts and are subject to numerous assumptions, risks, and uncertainties. Statements that do not describe historical or current facts, including statements about beliefs and expectations, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements may be identified by words such as expect, anticipate, believe, intend, estimate, plan, target, goal, or similar expressions, or future or conditional verbs such as will, may, might, should, would, could, or similar variations. The forward-looking statements are intended to be subject to the safe harbor provided by Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

All forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made and are based on information available at that time. We do not assume any obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect circumstances or events that occur after the date the forward-looking statements were made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events except as required by federal securities laws. As forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties, caution should be exercised against placing undue reliance on such statements. Please carefully review and consider the various disclosures made in this document and in our other reports filed with the SEC for more information about the risks and other factors that may affect our business, results of operations, financial condition or prospects.

Huntington Bancshares Incorporated logo (PRNewsfoto/Huntington Bancshares Incorpora)

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