Weekly Sustainability spotlight from TreeZero

FTSE Russell launches two new index series to support ESG integration into passive investment

FTSE Russell, the global index, analytics and data provider, announced the expansion of its Sustainable Investment index offering with the launch of the FTSE Global Climate Index Series and the FTSE ESG Index Series. The new index series build on the launch of the award-winning FTSE All-World ex CW Climate Balanced Factor Index, the first FTSE Russell index to combine a smart beta factor approach alongside climate change considerations. https://www.leaprate.com/financial-services/exchanges/ftse-russell-launches-two-new-index-series-support-esg-integration-passive-investment/

Canadians embracing environmental initiatives faster than Americans

A survey conducted by market-research agency ORC International for Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) found that about 40% of Canadians want to use paper or packaging products that have sustainability attributes. In the United States, that figure is only 27%. “It’s definitely insightful to see how many Canadians and Americans print in a digital age,” said Ian Lifshitz, APP Sustainability Director for the Americas. “About 91% of Canadians and 87% of Americans still print documents for personal or professional use. The survey also found significant differences between Canadians and Americans on some environmental issues:

  • 56% of Canadians surveyed said that they want the products to be made from recycled materials, while only 37% of Americans agreed.
  • 48% of Canadians want their paper and packaging products to come from sustainable forests, as against only 29% of Americans.
  • 41% of Canadians said it’s important that their products come with sustainable certifications, compared to just 25% of Americans.

https://graphicartsmag.com/news/2017/12/canadians-embracing-environmental-initiatives-faster-americans/

Catalyst Credit Line: A Financial Lifeline for Pre-Profit, Sustainable Startups

by Gary Groff
A recent C Space study found that S&P 500 companies working to build sustainability into their core strategies are outperforming those that fail to show leadership in the space. Similarly, a 2015 study by the Global Alliance for Banking on Values proved that “sustainability-focused banks continue to show that serving the real economy delivers better financial returns than those shown by the largest banks in the world,” proving that mission-alignment can produce tangible dividends on both sides of the spectrum. At New Resource Bank, we’ve specialized in collaborating with mission-aligned and sustainable companies for the last 11 years, and have watched small businesses we value struggle to get funding because of their size, because they are pre-profit and do not qualify for a loan. It’s long bothered us that we cannot adequately support these early-stage companies that deserve our attention. To combat this, we recently joined forces with asset-based lender P2Binvestor to create a new fintech offering called the Catalyst Credit Line (CCL), providing up to $10 million of credit to growing enterprises that may not have yet reached profitability, but have strong enough indicators of success to draw a pool of qualified investors and the secure backing of a bank. CCL grants access to lower interest rates than alternative online lenders by a collaborative funding mechanism between New Resource Bank and a select pool of accredited investors who engage over an exclusive financial platform. The CCL provides a way for growing businesses with receivables and inventory to start a banking relationship that can mature over time, and gain access to even more favorable pricing. As lending rates continue to drop, the Catalyst Credit Line will support our clients’ growth into profitability and beyond. Access to initial capital will continue to be one of the biggest challenges that growing enterprises of all kinds face. As investors and bankers, we must do a better job supporting mission-aligned companies, believing in their economic returns and empowering their communities to grow their businesses together. Mission-aligned businesses of all sorts are making compelling products for consumers, differentiating both on the quality of product they place on the shelf as well as the ethical, transparent underpinnings of their business. We’ve seen these companies win fiercely loyal fans, start attracting more talented and engaged employees, and building strong relationships — just by the impact nature of their business. Let’s double down on supporting sustainable businesses. The value and values created by this community make the initial struggle worth it, every time. http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/finance_investment/gary_groff/valuing_sustainable_startups

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