Bain & Company launches sustainability innovation center in Singapore

02 December 2020 Consultancy.asia

In combination with the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), strategic consultancy Bain & Company has established a Global Sustainability Innovation Centre (GSIC) in Singapore, in a bid to help unlock the $1 trillion green economy across Asia. 

The Global Sustainability Innovation Centre is a one-stop-shop for sustainability initiatives spanning: decarbonisation efforts; mobilising investors to go green; establishing a new sustainable venture; scaling green-focused startups; or building an ecosystem for collective action on climate change.

Putting collaboration at the core of a sustainable future, GSIC is set up to show Asian businesses the “shortest path to sustainability impact.” Bain & Company experts and business leaders will work to discover specific barriers on the sustainability journey and develop innovative solutions, which can then be scaled industry-wide or for the economy as a whole if possible.

Bain Global Sustainability Innovation Centre, Singapore

“The launch of the GSIC is a landmark step in championing sustainability for us at Bain, and we are thrilled to have received the support of many industry leaders, especially Singapore’s Economic Development Board,” said Satish Shankar, Managing Partner for APAC at Bain & Company.

Several factors made Singapore the location of choice. For one, Bain has a strong foothold in the country, having first launched there nearly three decades ago in 1993 and since established itself as a key centre in the firm’s Southeast Asia operations. Singapore also presents a market ripe for sustainable investments, with an innovative economy, pools of ready capital and support from government policy.

“Bain’s decision to establish its GSIC in Singapore will strengthen our sustainability ecosystem, and help companies here and across the region capture green growth opportunities,” said Dawn Lim, Head of Commercial and Professional Services at EDB.

Gerry Mattios and Dale Hardcastle – partners at Bain Singapore with expertise in a wide range of industries – take over as co-directors of GSIC. For Mattios, establishing the centre was a logical step given the reality of the climate crisis and the flurry of sustainable investments that have emerged in recent years.

A $1 trillion opportunity

With Covid-19 and all the accompanying ‘build back better’ government initiatives, this green push is only set to get stronger. “Yet in this race, Southeast Asia can build a lot more momentum to seize the opportunity,” said Mattios. According to Bain experts, Asia lags behind the world so far when it comes to sustainable investing.

That being said, the tide is turning in Asia as businesses take note of climate risks and environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) regulations take centre stage in financial reporting. Bain reports that $1 trillion is there to be unlocked across Asia through sustainability initiatives, positioning the region as a future driver of green investments.

More than $250 billion of this lies in the renewable energy market, for instance, while more than $200 billion lies in reducing food waste. More efficient industrial activity, better and more connected cities, and financing liquid carbon all hold hundreds of billions in value according to Bain experts. For Hardcastle, there is even more in nascent value to be discovered.

“Adopting green practices will meet the region’s wider environmental, social and governance (ESG) ambitions and in turn deliver societal benefits such as preservation of the earth’s natural ecosystems and social inclusivity—ends in themselves that also underpin increased growth.”