86% of Indian firms find a good association between sustainability and corporate profitability (SAP Sustainability Study)

At SAP Now, a flagship customer event attended by over 2000 delegates, SAP unveiled a new ‘sustainability study’ revealing that 86% of Indian organisations see a moderate to strong relationship between sustainability and profitability–and are increasing their investments as a result.

Profits and Efficiency Gains from Sustainable Investments:

• While 77% of Indian firms have seen sustainability measures contribute to revenue or profit growth on a moderate or strong basis. Similarly, 84% of Indian respondents reported that sustainability efforts resulted in a moderate or significant boost in the efficiency of company operations.

• 58% of Indian firms anticipate to see a good financial return on sustainability initiatives within the next five years. In India, 39% of firms want to boost their investments in sustainability during the next three years.

The most significant difficulty is a lack of environmental impact plan.

• The lack of an environmental impact plan is the most significant obstacle to environmental action, posing a difficulty for 40% of Indian enterprises.

• Other major obstacles include uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 epidemic, a lack of clear direction on how to integrate sustainability into company processes and IT systems, and a skills shortage.

Indian firms are striving to leverage the benefits of sustainability data:

• Businesses now feel that getting value from sustainability data is essential for making informed decisions. If our sustainability data is inaccurate, the actions we make to enhance the health of our world and our companies will be called into question. The objective is to capture and publish accurate, detailed, and auditable sustainability data, as well as link it with financial data, in order to make sound business decisions.

• While 40% of Indian organisations are entirely happy with the quality of their sustainability data, others say there is still more work to be done.

Indian businesses demand sustainability data from their ecosystem:
• Almost 8 out of 10 Indian enterprises (78%) report moderate or vigorous tracking of Scope 1 emissions, 77% for Scope 2 emissions, and 65% for Scope 3.

• 69% of Indian organisations use sustainability data to guide strategic and operational decisions to varying degrees. As a result, three-quarters (75%) of respondents indicated they want sustainability data from their suppliers, and 78% expect environmental impact data from partners such as logistics and fulfilment on a moderate to strong basis.

•Sustainability is closely related to SAP’s mission of making the world a better place by enhancing people’s lives. SAP’s efforts are focused on creating a sustainable future for the planet, our customers, and society as a whole by combining social, environmental, and economic performance.

Commenting on the survey findings, Paul Marriott, President, SAP Asia Pacific Japan, said, “The Asian market accounts for more than half of the world’s emissions, and as one of the region’s fastest growing hotbeds of innovation and economic activity, India is in a unique position to lead the charge against climate change. It is good to see that more Indian organisations are recognising and embracing this.

Manish Prasad, President and Managing Director of SAP Indian Subcontinent, went on to say, “Sustainability is today an economic need, not just a moral responsibility. It no longer stands out from the company’s overall financial performance. Our study’s findings show that firms that prioritise sustainability perform better. The time has come to treat carbon data like financial data in all company operations, combining financial and environmental decision-making.”

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