Positively Sustainable: More Than Just a Stamp
Since its inception in the 1970s, ESG Reporting has come a long way and with its influence now continuing to grow for both individuals and businesses, it’s never been more important to demonstrate your sustainability objectives, strategies, and results clearly.
“We developed FuturePlus as we looked all around the market, and we found the sustainability landscape incredibly confusing for businesses to navigate,” reveals Mike Penrose, co-founder of The Sustainability Group.
“We found so many solutions out there that almost penalised companies for trying to become more sustainable,” Mike continues.
Launched in 2021, FuturePlus is a sustainability management and ESG reporting platform for businesses looking to monitor and improve their social and environmental impact and has already attracted some impressive and varied clients, including DLA Piper, Grind Coffee, Soho House and Oxwash.
Created by The Sustainability Group Co-Founders Mike Penrose and Alex Smith, who combine over 42 years of experience helping organisations around the globe implement more sustainable, just, and profitable business practices, the tool was created for organisations of all sizes looking for an affordable, achievable and accessible route to ESG strategy and reporting.
“The benefits to businesses and organisations were massively clear. You see more and more capital being allocated to companies that can prove their sustainability credentials, and we know that consumers want it. We wanted to encapsulate that in one tool.”
But with a multitude of ESG reporting options available on the market, what sets FuturePlus apart?
“FuturePlus allows you to understand where you are on your sustainability journey as a business, but most importantly, it allows you to understand where you want to be in the next three years,” explains Mike.
“The platform allows you to appreciate that information and value it. You will have all the tools and expertise provided to you to achieve the objectives you set for your business’ sustainable growth.
“It then gives you the opportunity to communicate that journey and growth to your investors, stakeholders, shareholders, or anybody you’d like to. In a way that’s positive and demonstrates what you want to achieve, not necessarily what you have done.”
“In FuturePlus, what we’ve managed to do is achieve a platform that works for investors and businesses of any size; it’s particularly good for small to medium-sized organisations who may not have evidence of what they’ve done in the past but need to be able to demonstrate on what it is they plan to do.”
“Due to the comparable nature of the indicators, we also allow the aggregation of data so you can see how whole portfolios, groups or communities of companies are performing in terms of their sustainability objectives.”
The FuturePlus POSITIVELY SUSTAINABLE badge, launched last summer, allows businesses that have completed the initial assessment and pledged ambitions the chance to further demonstrate with the publication of the badge on products or websites.
“It’s been incredible to see so many clients proudly display the POSITIVELY SUSTAINABLE badge,” explains Mike.
“But this isn’t the end goal for us or our clients. The journey doesn’t stop once you receive the badge.
“As the adage goes: ‘If you are not moving forward, you are moving backwards’. We always have that in mind, and our clients understand that. Sustainable growth is a continual journey and that’s why we see our POSITIVELY SUSTAINABLE badge as more than just a stamp.”
It’s an ethos shared by the FuturePlus community. Jess Pritchard, Head of Commercial Operations & Finance at London-based startup, BLOCKHEAD.
“One of the key reasons we chose to work with FuturePlus over other alternatives, is that their process is one of continual improvement and evolution rather than a requirement to reach certain goals to be accredited.
“We know that our sustainability impact and responsibilities will be ever evolving as our business continues to grow and we are excited to have the expertise of the FuturePlus team to guide us throughout.”
Founded in 2016, BLOCKHEAD produces a range of vegan chewing gums that contain active ingredients such as vitamins, caffeine and botanical extracts to help improve focus, mood and mental performance. . Their new gum ‘Calm’ is leading industry innovation with its plastic free, aspartame free and sugar free design.
“At BLOCKHEAD, sustainability is something that our team cares deeply about and we have always made business decisions with sustainability issues in mind. We believe that all businesses have an obligation to operate as sustainably as possible, and doing so is a prerequisite for engaging with the modern consumer,” explains Jess.
“However, until FuturePlus, we had not formalised a clear sustainability strategy with clear long-term goals and measurement criteria.
“Our business is still relatively small but growing extremely quickly, and it can be difficult to prioritise and understand sustainability issues in such a fast-paced environment. This is why we see FuturePlus as such a valuable partner for BLOCKHEAD.
“The FuturePlus team have worked closely with us to really get to know our business and help us understand where we can make the most practical and impactful changes in the short, medium, and long term.”
Click here to book a free demo of the FuturePlus platform.