StartGreen Capital's sustainability policy dated March 10, 2021 consists of three parts:
- The impact policy: What impact StartGreen Capital wants to make and how it wants to achieve this, how impact is measured and reported in the StartGreen Impact Report. This policy is mainly aimed at how StartGreen Capital de positive wants to increase the contribution of companies. All funds from StartGreen aim to achieve a measurable positive effect on the environment and society (in accordance with the definition of 'sustainable investment' of the SFDR).
- The ESG policy: how StartGreen Capital identifies relevant ESG risks and opportunities at companies and how this is integrated in the entire investment process. Mainly focused on how StartGreen Capital any unfavorable wants to reduce the effects of companies on the environment, map sustainability risks and analyze their financial impact.
- The internal sustainability policy: how StartGreen Capital also tries to deal with people and the environment as consciously as possible internally.
Know more about Sustainability Information (SFDR)
1. Our impact policy
Our focus on sustainability
Sustainability is a broad concept. Different organizations and experts give their own interpretation. StartGreen Capital opts for a broad approach when financing companies. We finance both companies with an explicit sustainability objective and companies that do everything in their power to make a transition to sustainable business operations. StartGreen Capital believes that this broad approach has more impact than just financing new fully sustainable initiatives.
Sustainable Development Goals
StartGreen Capital has chosen to use the Sustainable Development Goals as a framework for determining the intended and realized impact. The SDGs are 17 goals set by the United Nations and provide a blueprint for solving the greatest societal challenges of the moment, such as the world food problem (SDG 2) and the energy transition (SDG 7). This acts as a roadmap for realizing peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and in the future (read more about the sustainable development goals here). StartGreen Capital only provides financing to companies that contribute positively to at least one of the SDGs.
Theory of Change
In 2018, StartGreen Capital drew up a Theory of Change to clarify what the organization does, for whom and why. A Theory of Change is a visual description of the activities an organization undertakes and how these lead to certain effects (outcomes) and social objectives (impact) in the short or long term. With the activities that StartGreen Capital makes possible, the organization creates value for entrepreneurs and investors. She also contributes to the development of the impact investment sector in the Netherlands. StartGreen Capital wants to make impact investment from a niche activity to mainstream. The ultimate impact objective of StartGreen Capital is to contribute to the 17 SDGs through financing to entrepreneurs. To make concrete how entrepreneurs contribute to these goals, a number of fixed indicators (KPIs) have been determined for each SDG with which progress and results are measured and monitored. These indicators are formulated as objectively as possible and can preferably be aggregated. Examples are the number of kilowatt hours of renewable energy generated, the number of sustainable products sold or the amount of CO saved2.
StartGreen Capital wants to measure its impact in order to communicate about this to stakeholders and to improve strategic decisions. The organization wants to show stakeholders that financial and social returns can go hand in hand. As with regular funds, financial returns are already clearly communicated to investors. Because social return is also part of StartGreen Capital's vision, a report that is as concrete as possible on this is important. In addition, StartGreen Capital wants to be able to make strategic investment or portfolio management decisions based on accurate impact data.
The impact measurement process is comparable for all StartGreen Capital labels and is broadly as follows:
StartGreen Impact Report
The impact made is presented annually in the impact report. Here, among other things, the developments of the past year are discussed and various case studies are shown. The 2019 impact report is
2. ESG policy
StartGreen Capital wants to provide financing (investments and / or loans) to companies that fit within the standards and values of its funds and today's society. The complication is that some companies (often unconsciously) do not (yet) comply with this on some environmental, social or administrative aspects when the company is in discussion with StartGreen Capital about possible financing. To identify and, where possible, bridge this difference between the current and desired situation, StartGreen Capital applies its ESG policy. This explicitly examines whether a company in question has adverse effects (“adverse impact”) on sustainability factors (ecological, social and employment issues, respect for human rights, and the fight against corruption and bribery). In addition, it is analyzed for each company whether there are significant sustainability risks (an environmental, social or governance event or circumstance that, if it occurs, could cause a material negative effect on the value of the investment). The aim of the ESG policy is to identify both risks and opportunities (opportunities for improvement). The ESG policy relates to the following three phases in the investment process:
The ESG scan is a questionnaire that must be completed by the investment team together with the company. This ESG scan contains, among other things, the mandatory and (where relevant) voluntary indicators that have been drawn up from the European Union regarding the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (specifically the indicators from the Principal Adverse Sustainability Impacts Statement, as shown in Annex I of the draft Regulatory Technical Standards). Based on the proportionality principle and the materiality principle, some items have been deliberately omitted (for example because they are not relevant for the type of companies in which StartGreen Capital invests). It is also tested whether the company acts in accordance with the “Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact” and (if it concerns a multinational company) the “OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises”. The ESG scan focuses on the following topics:
An extended version of the ESG scan is available on request to those involved.
3. Internal sustainability policy
In addition to the impact that StartGreen Capital makes possible through its financing to various companies, StartGreen Capital also strives internally to deal with people and the environment as consciously as possible.
Sustainable housing in the SDG House
StartGreen Capital is located in the SDG House of the Royal Tropical Institute in Amsterdam. The SDG House is a community of approximately 50 entrepreneurs and organizations that focus on one or more SDGs. The members try to accelerate the realization of impact through exchange and collaboration. In addition, the SDG House offers sustainable and social housing for its members, with care and attention for matters such as waste separation and organic catering. StartGreen Capital also takes its own sustainability measures. For example, the organization works paper-free as much as possible. In addition, StartGreen Capital stimulates sustainable commuter traffic. Employees use public transport and bicycle sharing subscriptions as much as possible and when they use a lease car as part of their work, they drive hybrid. As a result of the Covid-19 measures, people worked largely from home in 2020. In 2021, the StartGreen Capital office will be redesigned, using recycled and sustainable materials and furniture as much as possible.
Diversity and gender balance
An inclusive society in which everyone is given equal opportunities is very important to StartGreen Capital - which is why we also strive for diversity within our own organization. In addition, research has shown that various teams are more innovative and perform better. StartGreen Capital has had a balanced management team since its inception and knows diversity in all departments. For example, the male: female ratio within the management team is 60%: 40% and within StartGreen Capital as a whole is 47.5%: 52.5%. To stimulate female entrepreneurship, StartGreen Capital founded the Borski Fund in 2019 together with Simone Brummelhuis of The Next Women.
Knowledge sharing and development
The sustainability team provides annual internal workshops and brainstorming sessions where knowledge is shared in the field of sustainability, financial products and services and relevant legislation and regulations. StartGreen Capital also offers employees the opportunity to further develop job-related and / or personal competencies through internal and external training courses. In its work, the StartGreen Capital team consciously and actively tries to propagate the DNA and mission of the organization, in order to jointly increase the understanding and support for sustainable investment and entrepreneurship. Employees of StartGreen Capital regularly give presentations at events or universities to inform and inspire others about how financial and social returns can go hand in hand. Many workshops and events took place digitally in 2020.
Oneplanetcrowd B Corp has been certified since 2016. B Corps are companies that meet social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability requirements. B Corps strive for an inclusive and sustainable future with a good balance between social impact and making a profit. From a long-term vision, we continuously work on improving the value chain, optimizing impact and creating good work facilities. In addition, the quality mark offers access to a valuable network of other B Corp certified organizations. Oneplanetcrowd was recertified in 2018.
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