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Financial services invest half a million in sustainability, says iResearch

By Joy Dumasia

July 29, 2021

  • Europe
  • Financial
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More than two-thirds (67%) of financial services firms invest more than half a million pounds into sustainability initiatives each year, according to a global poll of 550 decision-makers working within financial services enterprises, banks, hedge funds, insurance and pensions firms, conducted by the data-driven thought leadership agency, iResearch Services.

These organisations spend the highest portion of their total annual budget on digital transformation and IT (39%), while 25% goes on staff training and skills development. But most significantly, more than a quarter (28%) of this budget goes on initiatives and technology that will help to make their business operate sustainably.

More than half (56%) consider their sustainable physical presence a significant focus for the organisation, with 39% suggesting initiatives have lost pace due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Almost one in five (15%) of the firms polled are investing more than £2 million per year into sustainability strategies, 22% are spending between £1 million and £2 million. In comparison, a third (30%) spend between £500,000 and £1 million. Only 15% of firms polled spend less than £250,000 annually on sustainable initiatives.

Institutions in China lead the way with an investment of more than £2million (40%), Germany (24%) leads the way in Europe spend over £2 million, with only 12% in the US spending this amount, and it drops further to only 8% in the UK. According to 48% of respondents, the biggest driver for firms to put in place sustainability strategies is to demonstrate alignment with their core vision and values.

Yogesh Shah, CEO at iResearch Services, said: “These responses clearly demonstrate that financial services firms are willing to put their money where their mouth is. It is clear that sustainability initiatives are demanded by customers, partners and prospects. Moving forwards, it won’t be enough to simply show good intentions, but to demonstrate tangible outcomes as well.”

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