As we reach the fifth anniversary of The Paris Agreement signing and annual Earth Day, the team at Vespa Capital reflects on how the past year has developed the discourse around sustainability; as well as how our portfolio is taking action on climate change and how we can invest to make a positive impact.
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted many insights that give us a refined perspective on our aim to tackle environmental issues. Both the rapid spread of the virus and the high mortality rates we have seen demonstrate how intrinsically connected humanity is to the environment around us. This sensitivity highlights how susceptible and fragile we are as a species, placing increased emphasis on the importance and collective responsibility we face when confronting the impacts of climate change. During the pandemic we have also witnessed great ingenuity and adaptation when challenged to overcome systemic threats; we have navigated national lockdowns and developed vaccines at an unprecedented pace which exhibit a similar focus that will be required to reduce global warming in the decades to come.
Climate responsibility has also appeared as a key item on the political agenda with the UK hosting COP26 later in 2021. At the same time, the Biden Administration has prioritised re-joining the Paris Accord and tackling climate change in the $2tn “The American Jobs Plan”.
Vespa Capital also recognises that the need for action extends beyond the governmental arena. Sustainability is now very much on the corporate agenda and a key feature of creating long-term value. Businesses are being driven by their customers, employees and investors alike to participate in the global effort.
Vespa Capital are proud signatories of the UN Principles of Responsible Investing (UNPRIs) which guide our ESG practices and procedures, helping us contribute to a sustainable future. Moreover, our portfolio companies are similarly aligned whether that be Lumi Global championing the adoption of virtual AGMs and therefore making a substantial contribution to reducing corporate travel, CHASE moving to an efficient vehicle fleet or Feefo generating 100% of its electricity from solar. Additionally, our recent investment in SelectScience, enables the global scientific community to interact without the need for air travel and reducing waste.
There is little doubt the pandemic will accelerate our push to create a sustainable future and 2021 could prove to be an inflection point for real progress. At Vespa Capital, sustainability is a key investment theme for us and we are keen to invest and support ambitious founders and management teams of businesses making a positive impact and providing sustainable solutions to businesses and society alike.