Unlock outsized long-term growth through purpose and shared value creation
Infusing higher societal purpose into company culture to guide strategic decisions, give clarity to everyday tasks and propel your organisation to success.
The change is fundamental
We believe that the coming decade holds the potential to fundamentally reshape social and environmental conditions for the better. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which provide a blueprint until 2030, represent a shift in awareness and intention that we think will prove to be the same sort of structural growth opportunity that digital technology has catalyzed – not a sector-based opportunity, but a theme which permeates every sector of the economy, and society at large.
Businesses that operate in line with global social and environmental objectives, including the SDGs, will not only be on the right side of history. They are also more likely to generate outsized returns, as governments continue to price in externalities, and investors and consumers increasingly favour sustainable businesses. We believe that the most successful businesses will be guided by a purpose which is jointly defined by commercial success and a broad concept of stakeholder value. To this end, we work with all of our companies to improve their sustainability alignment and integrate this into their value proposition and culture.
As long-time investors in tech-enabled businesses, we have been at the forefront of digitalization trends for well over a decade. The businesses we invest in have often had significant overlap between their business models and the objectives laid out in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, long before those goals were actually established.
Innovative use of technology will be the single most important component in reducing the resource intensity of our economies. As investors in growing tech companies, our strategy has been built around this theme in one way or another since our founding in 2003.
Our sweet spot
We made our first cleantech (as it was then called) investment over 10 years ago, and have been buying carbon offset quotas ever since.
Our investments in software are helping to digitalize the workplace and automate manual processes, while our ecommerce investments are providing consumers with alternatives to traditional retail, which suffers from an inefficient last-mile distribution system and a pollutive real estate footprint. Our energy and resource efficiency investments are facilitating the transition to clean energy and less wasteful raw material systems.
The last several years have seen a radical shift in public opinion and political engagement around sustainability, which we believe will create entirely new markets and lead to rapid growth of some existing markets, opening up a wide range of compelling business and investment opportunities.
In 2020, we have committed to working together with management at each of our companies in order to make at least one tangible improvement to the sustainability of their business.
What our businesses are doing
We’re proud of the work many companies in our portfolio are already doing to align their core business model with the SDGs.
Here are some examples of ways in which Verdane’s portfolio companies are contributing to the objectives of the SDGs today, and ways in which we are working with management teams to expand their company’s value proposition in line with the SDGs.
EasyPark helps drivers find available parking and EV charging quickly, helping to reduce the 30% of urban driving miles that are wasted searching for parking.
momox, Europe’s largest re-commerce site, enables consumers to find suitable pre-used alternatives to newly purchased goods, reducing waste and providing a marketplace for circular economy.
Danelec Marine offers maritime owners and operators the ability to transmit key operational metrics from ships in transit in the middle of the ocean to the cloud, in order to track and improve their vessels’ energy- and resource-use efficiency, reducing both cost and emissions.
The Humble Co. is a global health & wellness company offering reliable and innovative products designed by Swedish dentists, that are good for you and kind to our planet.
We worked with various of our ecommerce holdings to produce a handbook of Sustainability Initiatives in e-Commerce, detailing best practices and case studies from across the portfolio on ways in which these businesses can improve the sustainability of their supply chain, logistics, packaging, and last-mile delivery.
We worked with Mustad, a leading global provider of sport fishing hooks, to remove plastic from their packaging, which is often opened near lakes, rivers, or oceans.
We have supported BEWiSynbra through their implementation of Circular, in which the company has developed infrastructure for collecting and recycling EPS products, creating a circular supply loop for their core product and thereby creating the world’s first recyclable EPS.
Strong returns support good causes
In our two most recent funds, over 50% of our investors are not-for-profit organisations, which means that the returns our companies generate go toward good causes, such as funding retirement pension programs for public workers or supporting universities.
In addition, 10% of profits from Verdane’s operations goes to the Verdane Foundation, which provides charitable donations to non-profit organizations dedicated to positive social or environmental change. The Foundation also makes investments in companies that have positive impact as a core component of their mission and identity, but which are not eligible for investment from our other Verdane funds.