A survey of more than 8,500 companies around the world has revealed that nearly a third plan to take steps to make their suppliers and partners more sustainable over the next three years.
The research from HSBC also shows that 84 per cent of companies aiming to make ethically or environmentally sustainable changes to their supply chains are doing so to achieve cost efficiencies and improve revenues.
One in five say they have taken greater control of their supply chain over the last two years, partly because they are facing growing pressure from consumers to be more open about where their products come from and how they are produced.
The supply chain is also usually responsible for the vast majority of a company’s total carbon footprint.
‘Forward-thinkers taking action’
This means that the “green credentials of smaller suppliers and partners can be critical to a buyer firm’s reputation and performance”, HSBC said in a statement. Accordingly, a quarter of those surveyed said that transparency was now a key factor when procuring new suppliers.
Bryan Pascoe, global head of client coverage at HSBC Global Commercial Banking, said: “As businesses explore and invest in ways to stay competitive for the future, the most forward-thinking are already taking action. Becoming more sustainable is not only beneficial for the environment and for society, but for the bottom line too.”