2015: A Milestone For Sustainability, An Opportunity For Sustainable Investment

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Oekom research (www.oekom-research.com), a globally leading rating agency for sustainable investments, looks back on a successful business year, and notes that markers were set for key future trends during that year. Hardly another year has shown such ambivalent faces as 2015: on the one hand, it was a political and humanitarian annus horribilis, with ever-clearer signs of an onset in climate change; on the other hand, the international community enjoyed decisive successes in a number of significant international treaties against an unmanageable change in climate, and towards sustainable economic development. Outcomes such as the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the closing resolution of the World Climate Summit are encouraging signs and simultaneously an obligation to transform the agreed goals into concrete measures and actions in 2016.

In this regard, the responsibility of institutional investors takes on a very special meaning. Their actions provide decisive leverage for implementing and attaining sustainability goals. The more capital invested with a respect for ecological, social and ethical standards, the more the fundamentals will shift towards sustainability. A growing awareness of this was also reflected in oekom research’s business performance last year. In 2015, the rating agency gained numerous new national and international clients who were convinced by its services, the quality of its work and its innovative strength in the sustainability rating area. The rating portfolio grew further and new products and services were developed, allowing oekom research to offer innovative solutions for existing and future needs. Examples of this are the launch of the Sustainability Bond Rating in January and the presentation of the oekom Carbon Services in November 2015. In doing so, decisive developments were also enabled through closer collaboration with partner GES and a new cooperation with South Pole Group. In this connection, oekom research extended its Rating Universe to over 3,700 organisations.

To master the huge number of new tasks and expanded activity range with the expected quality and to its customers’ continued high satisfaction, the team was enlarged to almost 75. The success of the extended business to date is reflected in the results of the August 2015 international customer survey which confirmed a very high level of customer satisfaction with the service and the quality of oekom research’s ratings.

oekom research CEO, Robert Haßler, sees last year’s signals as an obligation for the still-young 2016. “If we think back to 2015, it is a hopeful sign that, despite the many crises, the international community was able to agree on goals for a sustainable future and for preserving our natural habitat and resources. These hard-won fruits must not be recklessly squandered away. Consequently, in 2016, investors and business will be confronted with increasing demands to allow visible and measurable implementation of these sustainability goals. For our business this means we will continue to grow massively in 2016 too, enabling us to offer yet more innovative solutions in response to our customers’ growing expectations.”