What place is there for finance in the ecological transition? – Sustainable finance

Companies are on the front lines of initiating or sustaining a much-needed environmental transition. Four sustainability experts share their solutions for making this change effective. Solutions exist between support, clear objectives and greener financing tools.

According to IPCC experts, there is only three years to act for climate, before the consequences of global warming become too great. There are more companies today and than ever before plays a major role in ecological transition. True disbelief is always in order if the first achievements have already been made. So, in the latest Corporate Engagement Barometer for September 2021, 68% of consumers has taken into account that it is implemented by companies green wash.

For Thierry Langreney, president of Ateliers du Futur, an international climate NGO, three key success factors companies to really move the lines: “this wanting to do what is the will know how reflected technically and technically be able especially represented by financier. Because the technological capabilities are extraordinary, we have the power and know-how to be done in Europe, and given that, we have a fairly flexible will. companies are subject to completely contradictory effects, he explains during a round table organized by TNP Consultants.

Major support issue

The passage of large groups occurs slowly, which a Some impact on SMEs and ETIs. “CAC 40 groups undertake that imust necessarily involve their supply chain. Institutional funders are also subject ever-increasing constraints, for example by the ECB. All this falls under the same structure of SMEs and ETIs, which is not the case completely unprepared, Anne Guerin, executive director of Bpifrance’s financing and network department, says. If not ready, these companies still ready to make this transformation. “One of our recent studies showed that 80% of SME and ETI managers are aware of these issues. he wanted to change things. But they also answer that they don’t know what to do and how to do it. there is is an important support issue. In addition to the necessary financial opportunities, there is also the issue of human capital in acquiring skills on these topics. he continues.

Cécile Cabanis, deputy managing director of the Tikehau Capital fund and former CFO of Danone, in turn long term support. “Today we look at our performance on a monthly basis, publish our performance on a quarterly basis and have a 3-year strategic plan for a transition that should take 10 years at best. develop the systemespecially the temporality and way of looking at performance and we must help everyone move toward the same goal.”

Defined objectives

Experts recommend that businesses take this issue seriously to define goals. Then Thierry Langreney advises “Having a plan of action tailored and tailored to these goals. Then you need to financial resources and management who will take the lead in determining who will do what, when and how. Preferably a unified managementbecause we are dealing with issues that affect all divisions of the company.

Cécile Cabanis also emphasizes importance of measurement and data. “We know today that recovering data in the first place remains extremely complex make sure we measure what makes sense and what effect. Then, our stakeholders and investors, apart from financial indicators, achieved a number of goals who are we in terms of influence” completes

New financial solutions

To deal with any cash flow problem, CFOs now have a choice greener financial solutions. For example, they can apply influence bankswhich prioritizes additional funding. “For all our projects, we are surprised by the impact. And for our new investments, since 2020, we have implemented a rating tool, thanks to which we will work. measure negative and positive externalities in various areas of sustainable development (ESG). It helps us make decisions. And when we go to the liability committee, we look at the financial return, the risk, as well additional financial impactand that’s a real talking point” Banque des Territories finance director Sarah Lacoche describes.

Another solution may be to apply impact fund. “The impact stock meets the requirements of articles 8 or 9 of the European taxonomy* and sustainability goal, Cécile Cabanis continues. In this regard, Tikehau Capital has created the largest European fund dedicated to the energy transition. “We consider all investments to be included in the fund according to several criteria: number of emissions avoidedthe share of renewable energy and low carbon mobility. Bringing in capital is good, but many companies lose out because they are overwhelmed by indexes, reporting requirements, and they don’t they do not focus on their main effects. This is where you need to focus and help them. We need to work with them on roadmaps, measurement tools and goals to follow.” completes

Finally, Bpifrance also provides a grant green credits for companies that want to be part of the dynamics of the ecological transition (only SMEs or independent ETI that have been operating for more than 3 years are eligible for this loan). Companies can thus borrow from 50,000 to 5 million euros for a long period, from 2 to 10 years, with a discount of up to 2 years. One billion euros In this form, the loan has already been granted by the bank.

*Article 8 of the European Regulation requires that financial products that “promote environmental or social characteristics” must explain how these criteria are met. The more demanding Article 9 requires that if the fund has “sustainable investment” as part or all of its objectives, the information must include a “benchmark index” aligned to that objective or, otherwise, “an explanation of the purpose for which that objective is pursued.” should be done. let it be achieved”.

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