This exercise in sustainable investment places finance in the context of sustainability. It provides a tool to integrate sustainability into investment and credit analysis by connecting it to strategy, competitive position, business models and value drivers. It is meant to deepen students' understanding of environmental, social and governance (ESG) integration in business by applying sustainable finance insights to a real-life example, and as such to develop the skill set needed to be able to steer funding to sustainable companies without sacrificing return.
In the exercise, students are required to select a public company of their choice in any industry and, using the list of questions in the tool, evaluate the selected company’s transition preparedness – in our eyes, the essence of corporate sustainability – and potential investor worth for the 21st-century firm.
The case is part of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) case series, developed by Rotterdam School of Management (RSM), Erasmus University. The description outlines the wider context of sustainable development – something that is currently not part of the usual curriculum at most business or economics schools – as well as the Sustainable Finance framework we’ve developed, before providing the exercise and tool. Video learning materials and other resources about the SDGs are available at www.rsm.nl/sdgs.