As the challenges facing the world become increasingly complex and record levels of investments have streamed into venture capital (VC) over the past two years, the responsibility of VC firms to be engines of positive transformation has never been greater.
Yet, it’s no secret that VCs have found Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and impact challenging themes to adopt and implement, debating their importance, definitions and scope.
While the discussion is likely to continue, it is increasingly clear that ESG and impact are not going away - driven by regulation and investor demand, as well as the values and priorities of founders, consumers and VC employees.
Investors have used ESG and impact principles for thousands of years - to better understand what a company does and how it operates and interacts with broader ecosystems. Now we have reached a point where ESG should be a fundamental part of business and not just a compliance-ticking or reporting exercise. As the concept continues to evolve, VCs should focus on simply helping portfolio companies focus on operational excellence, which allows them to scale efficiently, be attractive in international markets, and be prepared for the future.
Antler’s second annual ESG and Impact Report shares learnings on how VC firms can help create sustainable value from the outset, celebrates our portfolio companies' work in this space, and outlines our 2023 roadmap.
We’re adamant that ESG and impact can be a differentiator for both us as a VC and for our portfolio companies - resulting in better investments for our investors and better-managed businesses for the tech industry in the long term. Though a great deal of progress has been made in the past 12 months, there is much more we need to achieve, as individual VC firms and as an industry.
Contact Rosalind.Bazany@antler.co with feedback and to learn more about Antler’s ESG and impact philosophy and strategy.