Alluding that environmental and social governance are critical to maintain a successful business mantra, heads of leading corporate houses have said that the true value of a company lies in its sustainability. With increasing adoption and internalisation of sustainability into their corporate practices, India Inc reiterated the importance of maintaining a balance between sustainability and meeting business goals at the third edition of the India Sustainability Conclave 2014. The two day event held in Delhi from February 4-5, was organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) in association with The Financial Express as the print media partner and KPMG as the knowledge partner.
The focus areas of the conclave this year was sustainability reporting, supply chains, sustainable financing, relationship between CSR and sustainability, global trends and outlook on corporate sustainability along with sustainability as a business excellence mantra.
FICCI had launched its annual flagship event—India Sustainability Conclave in March 2012 which acted as a platform for brainstorming on how businesses can find solutions and approaches for companies to start looking at sustainability as an integral concept and to internalise it in their day to day operations.
In his keynote address at Conclave themed around ‘Balancing business goals in a sustainability paradigm’, Yvo de Boer, former executive-secretary, UNFCCC and KPMG Global chairman, Climate Change & Sustainability Service said: “A new business model, True Value, is needed. We need to explore a much broader and longer term sense of what company value actually means and how the system can be evolved to recognise this. It can help business adapt and become fit for purpose in the modern business race. Where growth opportunities are maximised, and new risks are managed intelligently.”
As part of its report ‘Expect the Unexpected’, KPMG identified some social and environmental mega forces namely soaring global population, exploding middle class with new spending power in developing countries (including India), shift of population from rural areas to cities. Together these three mega forces are now driving the others such as increased demand for energy, increased competition for water supplies, food security issues, loss of forests and decline of ecosystems. India is arguably one of the most exposed countries to the effects of the mega forces. In India and elsewhere, mega forces are taking us to economic, social and ecological disaster, unless a dramatic and potentially disruptive change of course can be engineered.
Besides, a Ficci-KPMG knowledge paper on ‘Corporate