“Edelweiss Alternatives’ ESG Report marks a significant milestone in its journey towards sustainable and ethical business practices. The comprehensive approach to ESG, combined with a strong focus on community and environmental well-being, sets a benchmark in the industry for responsible and sustainable growth.” – India CSR
NEW DELHI (India CSR): In today’s world, facing urgent environmental and social issues, the importance of capital providers in fostering sustainable practices has become increasingly vital. Edelweiss Alternatives announces the launch of its 2022-23 ESG Report, titled “Beyond Business”. This comprehensive document underscores the company’s holistic approach towards responsible investing and sustainable growth, going beyond mere financial metrics to incorporate social, environmental, and governance factors.
The “Beyond Business” report, Edelweiss Alternative Asset Advisors Limited’s fourth ESG report since FY 2019-20, provides a transparent overview of the company’s performance, sustainability efforts, and ESG impact. It covers the operational context, risks, and opportunities related to the company and its portfolio companies.
Edelweiss Alternatives: Pioneering Sustainable Investment Practices in India
Investing in Sustainable Development
The report highlights Edelweiss Alternatives’ focus on sectors with significant societal impact, like renewable energy and affordable housing. The company’s credit strategies are tailored towards nurturing mid-income businesses and facilitating the revival of portfolio companies.
“We release our ESG report on an annual basis, with the previous report being published for FY 2021-22. This report features disclosures related to our financial as well as non-financial performance between April 1, 2022, and March 31, 2023. The scope and boundary of the report, pertain to our offices in India and Singapore.”, the company said.
“The ESG Report for FY 2022-23 has been prepared in reference to the latest GRI Standard 2021 with effect from 1st January 2023. We have also considered relevant materiality topics as outlined by the SASB Materiality Index for Asset Management and Custody Activities industry. Furthermore, we have aligned ourself with UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and work towards human rights based on UNGC’s Ten Principles.”, the report said.
“At an organizational level as well, along with other Edelweiss group companies, we have brought about reductions in our energy consumption, water usage and waste generation. We have been able to accomplish a 10% reduction in emissions over the FY 2019-20 baseline.” said Venkat Ramaswamy, Chairman of Edelweiss Asset Management.
Environmental Initiatives and Climate Action
A key achievement is the reduction of approximately 23.1 million tons of carbon emissions through the renewables portfolio. Edelweiss Alternatives has also launched a Climate Fund and implemented water-saving technologies, demonstrating its commitment to environmental sustainability.
The renewable energy portfolio is projected to reduce carbon emissions over its lifespan. Plans are underway to establish a Climate Fund, partnering with selected entities. Additionally, the renewable assets have achieved substantial water savings, annually conserving over 26 million liters via a robotic cleaning system for solar panels, and harvesting more than 900,000 liters of rainwater in infrastructure projects.
Edelweiss Alternative Asset Advisors Limited’s support of mid-sized businesses, affordable housing, and key infrastructure plays a role in India’s development. Their investments contribute to job creation, economic growth, community improvement, and sustainable infrastructure development. The company’s efforts have helped numerous stressed businesses, maintaining and creating approximately 25,000 jobs. Additionally, their real estate financing strategies have facilitated the development of around 26,000 middle-income and affordable homes across India.
Financial Performance and Investor Interest
Edelweiss Alternatives reports a robust financial performance, with increased interest from domestic investors in alternative funds. The successful launch of specialized funds and an Energy Infrastructure Investment Trust (InvIT) underscores this trend. Edelweiss Alternatives reported a strong financial performance this year. There has been a notable increase in domestic investor interest in alternative funds, looking for diverse options beyond traditional investments. The company’s SFDR Article 8 funds, including the third-generation special situations fund and the second-generation infrastructure yield fund, have garnered significant client interest, leading to approximately 140 billion in capital commitments from both offshore and domestic investors.
Employee Well-being and Diversity
Edelweiss Alternatives emphasizes the importance of its workforce, focusing on attracting and nurturing talent through continuous training and professional development. Efforts are being made to enhance workforce diversity, including within investment teams. The company also prioritizes employee health and safety, as evidenced by over 14,000 hours of related training across its infrastructure portfolio.
ESG Integration and Global Commitments
As an early adopter of ESG principles in India’s alternative asset management space, Edelweiss Alternatives continues to strengthen its sustainability integration. Edelweiss Alternatives has been a forerunner in adopting ESG practices in India’s alternative asset management sector, consistently enhancing sustainability integration. Becoming signatories to the UN PRI and launching EU SFDR Article 8 funds highlight their ongoing commitment to environmental and social stewardship.
Their ESG journey began in January 2017 with the ESG Policy initiation. Marking their fourth consecutive year, they’ve published their sustainability report, and in 2023, became signatories to the UN PRI. Additionally, in 2022, they launched two EU SFDR Article 8 funds with a focus on Environmental and Social characteristics.
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