Mr Rajeev Peshawaria, CEO of the Stewardship Asia Center
Early this year, as part of our ongoing commitment to supporting UN SDG 4- Quality Education we launched the first Singapore Intervarsity Panvest® Case Competition to coach undergraduate students on Panvesting. In this month's Arcus, I'm excited to share with you how the next generation of Panvestors view Danone and Unilever's purpose driven models.
The competition started with an insightful session with Mr Rajeev Peshawaria, CEO of the Stewardship Asia Center (SAC) on purpose, followed by the team at Panarchy training the teams on our Panvesting process. We received 8 submissions from student teams at SMU, NUS and NTU. A big thank you to Prof Vish at NTU and Matt Dearth from SMU for helping the Panarchy team adjudicate the finalists.
Congratulations to Teams Maroon 4 and SNJV for making it through to Panarchy's Intervarsity Panvest® Case Competition finals which will be held on 20th of May at our Global Panvest® Forum.
Below please enjoy Maroon 4 and SNJV's synopsis and video presentations on Danone and Unilever which got them to the finals.
Team SNJV - SMU
Nixon Lim, Serephina Wee, Jeevan Sangker, Vincent Htoo
Danone Conclusions From Team SNJV
Danone, a food products MNC with a global presence, is dedicated to bringing health through food to as many people as possible. Danone marketed itself to having a strong purpose in integrating sustainability into its business model. In our goal to analyse Danone’s purpose-driven growth model, we incorporated 3 key components. It comprises of Danone's Purpose, Resilience and Threats & Opportunities. These components combined will outline the effectiveness of Danone’s sustainable efforts in both the present and future. Purpose Danone’s purpose is to build purpose-driven brands while preserving the planet’s resources. There is evidence to suggest that Danone is committing to its purpose. Not only does Danone have responsible business stewardship, and multiple efficiency programs to save cost and fuel growth, it also holds numerous environmental related achievements such as being 50% operational B-Corp certified and AAA rating from MSCI ESG. Moving forward, Danone has incorporated its 2030 goals to be aligned with the SDG of the United Nations, and has strategic targets to be 100% B-Corp certified by 2030. Resilience Our resilience analysis comprises of Danone's Materiality Issue mapping, S.M.A.R.T Targets, and Resilience Framework. Within Financial, Environmental, Social and Human Capital, Danone recognises that it needs to generate long-term returns, integrate sustainability into the business, continue funding its social innovations despite COVID-19, and to improve women & youth empowerment. To do so, Danone needs to achieve its S.M.A.R.T Targets. In our analysis, while Danone has outperformed most of its S.M.A.R.T Targets, it was mainly unable to achieve its financial capital related targets. However, there is a case for this factor to be discounted as the 2020 COVID-19 climate.impacted many companies financially. In its Resilience Framework, Danone displayed exemplary innovation in being the first listed company to adopt the French legal framework of “entreprise à mission”, which is to create and share sustainable value for stakeholders. Threats & Opportunities The main threat that may hinder Danone’s purpose is the change in C-suite level management. Given that the fundamental reason for leadership restructuring was because investors wanted more focus on profitability, new management may experience difficulty in continuing Danone’s journey in dedicating resources for optimal sustainable related strategies. However, new opportunities also arises from this threat. Specifically, the new management comes with a fresh perspective and may cover a wider scope than the old management. Empirical evidence suggests that there is no reason to fully discount the new management to fall short in profitability and sustainability. For example, Nestle, Danone’s rival, made a drastic turnaround from poor performance after a change in management. In conclusion, we recognise that Danone is well rounded in all 3 components and has the potential to continue to pursue its purpose.
Team Maroon 4 - Unilever Case Study
Luo Siyi, Or Shao Ning Shannon, Zhang Yiqing, Saiyara Makhnoon
Unilever Conclusions from Team Maroon 4
Unilever operates as a fast moving consumer goods company in various parts of the world through Beauty and Personal Care, Food and Refreshments, and Home Care segments. Their purpose is to make sustainable living commonplace and driven by this very purpose, they have become a leader in the corporate sustainability field, and they continue to reassess its sustainability targets routinely. As a purpose-centric business with purpose led brands like Dove and Love Beauty Planet, the company also encourages employees to bring their purpose to work and this has led to the generation of innovative ideas from the ground up. Unilever’s business strategy and its decisions have the potential to impact a wide range of people - from its consumers and shareholders, to the environment and society at large, thus the company is mindful to take the needs and interests of these stakeholders into account through routine surveys and by working with non governmental organisations to further a range of social causes. Furthermore, as one of the largest FMCG companies, Unilever has the unique ability to create a ripple effect within the industry and bring about change on a system-wide level. Unilever recognises and capitalises on the trend of consumers preferring to work with socially responsible companies continue by branding itself as a sustainable and socially responsible organisation. This strategic move has drawn in a larger consumer base as supported by consumer data which shows that Unilever’s Sustainable Living Brands grew 69% faster than the rest of the business in 2018, as compared to 46% in 2017. However, it is also important for Unilever to not rest on its laurels as other major FMCG companies such as P&G and Nestle are also rapidly innovating to reduce their environmental impact as well as putting aside funds to champion for socially responsible causes. As for the company’s progress in achieving its SMART Targets declared in their 2010 Sustainable Living Plan, they have successfully accomplished a good number of them, an example being how they achieved zero nonhazardous waste to landfill in their manufacturing sites. They did fall short on some such as only reducing consumer waste footprint by 34%, falling short of their targeted 50%. Unilever’s commendable progress was made possible through 1) Research & Development, 2) exemplary innovation as well as 3) collaborations & partnerships. They invest around €1 billion in R&D each year and have global partnerships with various universities and start-ups. The company also recognizes the importance of fostering a happy workplace that encourages growth and acts in accordance by upskilling workers, focusing on diversity and inclusion in the workplace and upholding labour and union rights.