Bain & Company buys stake in ESG platform EcoVadis

27 February 2020 Consultancy.asia

Bain & Company, one the world’s leading strategy and management consultancies, has picked up a minority stake in business sustainability ratings and intelligence firm EcoVadis.

Leading strategy and management consultancy Bain & Company has made a sizeable investment in EcoVadis, a Paris-based firm which provides “sustainability ratings, intelligence and collaborative performance improvement tools” for global supply chains. Alongside its French headquarters, EcoVadis has offices in eleven further countries worldwide, including Asian outlets in Hong Kong and Japan.

Bain’s minority stake in EcoVadis coincides with a recent investment of around $200 million from CVC, courtesy of the private equity firm’s Growth Fund II, and according to a press release will accelerate and deepen both companies’ offerings for improving ESG performance of their clients – with Bain set to integrate the sustainability ratings into its corporate strategy, supply chain and procurement approach.

“Environmental, social and governance issues are critical to business success, economic growth and societal improvement, and we are looking forward to working closely with two partners who rightly place these factors at the core of their business strategies,” said Aaron Dupuis, partner at CVC Growth Partners. “This collaboration with Bain & Company coupled with our recent investment is a real game changer.”

Bain & Company buys stake in ESG platform EcoVadis

Established in 2007 by co-founders and current co-CEOs Pierre-François Thaler and Frédéric Trinel, EcoVadis has since advised over 60,000 businesses worldwide on both the supplier and procurement sides, including global corporates with complex supply chains such as Coca Cola, Johnson & Johnson, L'Oréal and Nestlé – claiming on its website that 65 percent of clients achieve early improvements.

The assessments take into account a range of CSR factors, grouped around environment, ethics, labour and human rights, and sustainability. Already, the EcoVadis database covers more than 150 countries worldwide, as well as almost 200 industries – backed by a multinational team of 600 analysts and employees spread across its twelve countries of operation, including a Hong Kong office launched in 2016.  

“We continue to see executives from all over the world share bold plans for sustainability and ESG transformation,” Thaler said in an announcement. “Collaborating with Bain & Company and CVC equips us to reach, enable and impact more organisations and communities globally. The investment is a strong testament to the value and business-critical role that sustainability plays in today’s market.”

Jenny Davis-Peccoud, Bain’s Amsterdam-based global Sustainability & Corporate Responsibility Practice.co-lead, concluded; “Bain & Company is committed to our mission of creating economic, social, and environmental value for our clients – recognising that social and environmental challenges are growing, timelines for addressing them are contracting, and that companies are moving quickly to adapt.