At Futuretivity we focus on delivering environmental, social and economic benefits for businesses investing in sustainability, and so we are delighted to see that Earth Day 2023 is themed ‘invest in our planet’.
Data Driven Investment
The data is unequivocal – investing in sustainability for your business delivers better financial performance and a happier workforce, as well as ensuring a healthier planet and more impact for your business. Investors have been recognising the long-term value created by companies focused on delivering environmental and social value and with clear ESG objectives.
Just this week a Bain and EcoVadis study revealed how sustainable businesses are more profitable businesses, with data from 100,000 companies showing that “strong ESG performance is a sign of strong business”. By deploying impactful objectives and, importantly, a culture of sustainability from the leadership down improves a company’s performance (and with more women on the board, both growth and profitability improve).
But it’s not just that sustainability is delivering profits and returns within the business, integrating sustainability into M&A deals is also delivering results of improved post-merger integration and, importantly, retaining talent often lost in the process but whom bring experience and value to the newly formed company. A staggering 83% of business leaders now view ESG as core to the M&A process, building value long term and mitigating risk so becoming increasingly important in the deal-making process.
Origins of Ethical Investment
Ethics-based investment is not new, with its origins linked to early Judaism, Islam and more recently the Quaker movement (if you can all 400 years ago ‘recently’). The Quakers, for example, started their opposition to slavery as far back as the 1600s but prohibited profits from slavery in the US in 1776, bringing ethics to the forefront of investment decision-making as now embodied in the Quaker Investment Policy.
The movement to link investment to the planet’s well-being, however, is more recent still with the launch of Pax World Fund (now Impax Asset Management) in 1971, set up by Methodist ministers opposed to the Vietnam war and, specifically, the use of Agent Orange chemicals and establishing environmental concerns alongside social values as underpinning ethical investing. Today, Impax Asset Management is at the forefront of investments for a more sustainable world, as their President Joe Keefe puts it “I don’t know how anyone in this day and age invests without taking climate into consideration”.
Rise of the Green Economy
The rise climate-focused investment mirrors the growth of the Green Economy, and the transition of our society towards one that delivers equity and prosperity for all within the ecological limitations that protect our planet. By focusing our investment in the well-being of the planet, and so safeguarding, restoring and protecting nature and the resources within it, we build opportunities for new products, innovation and build resilience and prosperity into the future. Like logistics company CHEP who built their business by adapting an inherently unsustainable service around sharing and circular economy models to reduce the environmental impact and increase the social value of moving goods around the world. The result is a profitable business that operates ethically, mitigates risk from geo-political instability, reduced costs and strengthened supplier partnerships.
At the core of this, however, is choice. Organisations, individuals and businesses making an active choice to take a kinder, greener, fairer path that invests in people and planet as much as it seeks to generate profit. By embedding our values in our decision-making, we create long term, far reaching value – environmental, social and economic.
As we celebrate Earth Day today, it’s important to remember that we all – however small our business or wallet – can choose to invest in the planet for a future that is fairer, healthier and more prosperous for us all.
Futuretivity for Business Sustainability
Futuretivity delivers climate positivity with vibrant, socially impactful commercial power. We recognise that the how-to of sustainability can be overwhelming, so we partner with businesses to empower them with actionable roadmaps, skills for the future and meaningful connections to succeed. Being a conscious business needn’t cost the earth nor cost your business.
For more inspiration and insights on sustainability for business go to futuretivity.com/resources If you are a company that needs help with sustainability in your business book a call with Futuretivity now and get sustainability delivered.