Sustainability does not have to come at a cost. A well-designed sustainability program can help companies increase profits by generating savings, driving growth, and reducing risk.
Creating a sustainable enterprise involves transforming the entire value chain from the supply of materials to product design, operations, sales and marketing, and end-of-life management. We help clients uncover opportunities and risks, set priorities, and launch coherent implementation programs.
To support the building of sustainable enterprises, we have developed a diagnostic tool that identifies opportunities to promote growth through new products, new markets, and the composition of the business portfolio; improve return on capital through green sales and marketing, sustainable value chains, and sustainable operations; and manage risk, whether regulatory, reputational, or operational.
We help companies create sustainability strategies from initial diagnostics to practical implementation, seeking to improve profits as well as reduce environmental impact.
For example, we worked with a leading electronics and industrial engineering company to review its green portfolio and explore how a sustainability agenda could revitalize its business. Through a series of workshops, we helped senior executives reach agreement on goals for revenues and CO2 abatement, define individual initiatives such as pursuing smart-grid technology, identify practical steps to turn commitment into action, and build alliances with external stakeholders. The board approved targets to increase sales of sustainable products by more than a third, enable customers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 250 million tonnes, and save $2.7 billion in energy costs.
To help companies assess how emerging regulations might affect their business and take appropriate action, we provide support with scenario planning, stakeholder analysis, strategy development, external and internal communications, and monitoring.
We helped a major basic materials company evaluate its carbon footprint and understand the likely impact of climate change regulation. To determine the client’s exposure, we ran multiple scenarios to test the effect of regulation on costs, prices, and margins. We then worked with the client to develop a portfolio of carbon reduction measures and a fact base to inform the regulatory debate.
To be effective, sustainable growth strategies must be compatible with a company’s existing business. We offer support in pursuing green growth through portfolio investment decisions, green products and technologies, and opportunities in new markets and segments.
For example, we supported a big European investment bank in developing a business-led green growth strategy by exploring how climate change was affecting its clients and what opportunities this presented. In what is fast becoming a highly competitive arena for financial institutions, we identified six commercial initiatives that could be worth $1.3 billion to the client after four years.
Managing for sustainability
We help clients build sustainability into their day-to-day business by reshaping their organization, systems and processes, and culture and values. We also work with clients to extend sustainability beyond their own four walls through product recovery and recycling, supplier engagement and monitoring, and industry collaboration to set standards.
Recently we worked with a large consumer goods company to improve end-of-life management in a $2 billion business. We helped the client shape a public position on sustainability, take the lead in driving a proactive approach across the industry, and develop a plan that identified savings of more than $250 million.