We believe that ESG is very important
The acronym ESG stands for Environmental, Social & Governance. It means that factors such as energy, climate influence, reuse of resources, health, safety and good corporate governance are taken into account in the selection and management of portfolio companies.
A number of
recent studies have shown that companies that perform well on environmental,
social and governance structure, earn better shareholder results in the
longer term. (For example the Eurosif SRI study of 2014). This is substantiated
by the positive correlation between ESG ratings and the risk adjusted returns
of the assets. Furthermore, we believe that in the coming times,
sustainability of business models will become even more significant in
determining the long term market performance of companies.
We only invest in ethically responsible companies
Our investment in ethically responsible companies is based on a four phase procedure.
Negative screening and Sector exclusions
To start with, we exclude certain sectors on ethical and mission based requirements from our investible universe to ensure our investment universe is comprised of socially and environmentally sustainable companies. Examples of excluded sectors are weapons, tobacco, etc.
Best in class approach
In the second phase, we consider the publicly available ESG disclosure scores. This is a best in class approach that helps us formulate a picture of ESG performance of the company.
Firm level analysis
In the next step we deep dive into a rigorous firm level analysis or a norm based screening, where we evaluate the performance of the company on a set of 30 ESG parameters, to evaluate the ESG performance of the company with respect to its peers and on a historical level.
In the final phase, we also engage in a suggestive role to improve the ESG performance of the companies that we invest in.
Value Square and the climate
In the context of climate change Value Square on the one hand entered into a partnership with CO2logic, in order to objectify, reduce and compensate our CO2 emissions. On the other hand, we moved to ABSoluut Plaza, a new complex built with sustainable building materials and techniques. Value Square is, as a company, aware of climate changes and CO2 emissions. With these two initiatives we want to take responsibility and contribute to a more sustainable earth.
Value Square is CO2 neutral
Our partner CO2logic is a consultant in CO2 neutrality. Through the certified climate project "Saving Trees in Uganda" we have compensated 12 tons of CO2 for the financial year 2017. We have achieved CO2 neutrality with this CO2-NEUTRAL certificate in accordance with PAS2060, the international standard for CO2 neutrality that guarantees credible climate action.
Since the start of the project "Saving Trees in Uganda" more than 480,000 efficient cooking ovens have reached the households in Uganda. The aim of this climate project is threefold: saving trees, reducing forest degradation and ensuring better living conditions for the local population by reducing harmful air pollutants in their household (Saving Trees, 2018; CO2logic, 2018)
CO2 neutrality and the "CO2 Neutral" label are assessed
and validated by Vinçotte, an independent international certifying body.
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Move to ABSoluut Plaza
We moved to our new offices on 31 October 2018. Absoluut Plaza is a project of ABS Bouwteam and the building is fully prepared for the future. Climatisation is generated centrally and collectively.
The need for heating and cooling is minimized through optimal insulation and sun protection. In addition, geothermal energy takes all the energy for heat and cooling out of the earth by using the soil as a kind of battery for heat / cooling (up to more than 120 meters depth). Water pumps, drillings and hydraulics are used. The heat that is removed from the building in the summer (ie the cooling of the building) is stored in the ground. In the course of the heating season, that heat is removed to warm up the building. The energy required to convert the geothermal energy into usable heat and cooling (i.e. the heat pump) is generated locally and sustainably via the sunlight, i.e. via solar panels. Furthermore, the rainwater is collected for, among other things, the toilets in the building. (ABS Bouwteam, 2018)