Veronique Chapplow, equities investment director at M&G, looks at the companies increasing their sustainability efforts during the pandemic.
Investing with the intention to generate positive societal impact alongside a financial return is still often perceived as a 'nice to have', or something which is really only appropriate for the 'responsibly minded'.
However, as Covid-19 severely disrupts markets and society, priorities are being reset, and viewpoints reframed, out of sheer necessity.
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This shift in focus could see impact investing move into the mainstream, as a world in lockdown focuses on the problems we are facing, and the need to find solutions.
The social and human costs of the pandemic have made it obvious that more resources must be deployed in many areas targeted by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a matter of urgency; not least of which is SDG 3: Good Health and Wellbeing.
However, it has also highlighted that extracting ourselves from the current crisis will require more than government intervention. Industry at large must step in to fill the gap.
While industry can provide much needed capital, its ability to innovate and deliver immediate relief to those suffering, as well as long-term solutions to systemic challenges, will be just as meaningful.
A number of impactful companies are ramping up efforts to offer solutions, either leveraging their expertise or, in some cases, developing brand new products. The gallery above shows the companies doing so.