EcoVadis gets $200m backing to expand ethical supply chains

Software firm EcoVadis has secured a $200m investment to scale globally and ingrain sustainability, fair labour practices, and ethics into businesses’ supply chains.

The sum, from investor CVC Growth Partners, is one of the largest investments made in the environmental, social and governance (ESG) sector to date.

EcoVadis, which describes itself as "the world leader in business sustainability ratings for global supply chains", will use the funding to expand its operations internationally and further invest in its technology platform and network of companies. It currently works with 60,000 firms, including L’Oréal, Subway and Nestlé in 155 countries.

Pierre-Francois Thaler, co-CEO of EcoVadis said: “Momentum towards a more environmentally and societally-focused economy has been building for years. Today’s executives recognise the power of sustainability to protect their brands, increase valuation, inform investment strategies and positively impact the world.

“The supply chain is the single greatest lever for creating real change and making an impact. But when left unmanaged, it becomes a breeding ground for hidden risk – including forced labour, environmental waste, corruption, security issues and more.”

EcoVadis provides ratings in areas such as sustainable procurement, ethics, labour and human rights, and environment. It aims to help businesses evaluate and improve environmental and social performance across their global supply chains. 

“The combination of global sustainability initiatives, evolving compliance regulations, and corporate purpose commitments are putting a new and urgent spotlight on the supply chain – and creating an immense and growing market for our solutions,” added Frédéric Trinel, co-CEO of EcoVadis.

Aaron Dupuis, senior MD at CVC Growth Partners, said: “We have followed EcoVadis for several years as part of our long-standing efforts in supply chain risk management, where we identified ESG as a particular area of focus for best-in-class companies, and are incredibly excited about the immense opportunities that lie ahead for the company, as it continues to establish itself as the gold standard for ESG ratings.”

In 2019, an EcoVadis report revealed global firms remained “stagnant” on efforts to improve supply chain sustainability. The firm said the results highlight an urgent need for organisations to engage with supply partners to uncover risks.

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