What Is ESG?

Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) are the three pillars of sustainability. The environmental pillar largely focuses on reducing emission levels and increasing operational eco-efficiency through the adoption of policies, strategies, and actionable practices. The social pillar in ESG gives greater emphasis on enhancing the organization’s social and ethical responsibility to the community. While the corporate governance pillar focuses on fostering an independent and more transparent governance practice. Each criterion, while measured separately, is interlinked with each other and analyzed collectively.

WHY IS ESG important?

The world is dealing with new unprecedented risks that affect daily operations and require strategic planning. From flood risk to rising sea-levels to data privacy and security, are a few reasons that highlight the necessity of a clear ESG policy and strategy. ESG factors are found to be crucial for assessing such sustainability impact of investment for investors as well as our continued livelihood. Through benchmarking the non-financial performance of companies in the industry, investors can determine their sustainability and impact their investments have on the environment. There is a broadening interest among shareholders on several key ESG issues, and a growing willingness on their part to vote and engage in the same.

GSM’s commitment to ESG monitoring

GSM (Global Sustainable Markets) Holdings has integrated ESG factors into its business strategy from its pre-seed days. We have developed our own ESG framework that initially encompasses 25 criteria at GSM Holdings. There are six environmental, twelve social, and seven governance criteria within the framework. To prioritize each ESG criterion, we conduct an annual materiality analysis that assesses the ESG priority of our management, employees, and key stakeholders. GSM Holding integrates these criteria in phases based on different priorities. We will aim to measure all possible indicators within the next 24-36 months.

Environmental criteria at GSM Holdings emphasizes biodiversity management, maintaining a closed-loop, landfill-free waste management system, renewable energy consumption, and double offset of the operational carbon footprint. As a company, we put emphasis on bringing our whole operation onto the Net Zero path. We are focused on addressing climate goals (SDGs) through local sustainability initiatives at all our sites and to SDG priorities into applicable ESG criteria. These include tie-ups with NGOs/initiatives that focus on tree planting and vegetation management and thereby creating employment opportunities for farming communities and residents.

Social criteria at GSM Holdings emphasize employee career development, innovation management, local community engagement, information security, employee diversity, human rights, and enhanced product quality. GSM members lead extensive research into ESG and sustainable opportunities as a key innovation management effort. A mix of employees, nationalities, and cultures characterizes our culture while diversification and inclusion remain two of our highest priorities.

Corporate Governance Criteria at GSM Holdings emphasizes business ethics, risk management philosophy, adoption of anti-crime measures, and bringing diversity to the Board of Directors. In addition to traditional financial metrics, our executive leadership considers ESG as a critical risk factor while building the GSM Holdings risk registry. Our CEO (Chief Executive Officer) and senior management play a direct role in decision-making regarding ESG in our company.