Stockholm firms among world’s most sustainable

Published February 2016 in collaboration between Invest Stockholm and The Swedish Wire.

Stockholm is known for its tech startups, but its businesses also lead global rankings when it comes to their green credentials. For the fifth year running, home appliances maker Electrolux has been named the world’s most sustainable company in the RobecoSAM annual rankings of more than 2,000 of the world’s largest companies.

And it was far from the only Stockholm-based firm on the list. In total, six companies from Stockholm were included in the RobecoSAM Sustainability Yearbook. The others were: H&M (fashion), Modern Times Group MTG (media), Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken (banking), Svenska Cellulosa AB SCA (household products) and Swedbank AB (banking).

Henrik Sundström, head of sustainability affairs at Electrolux, said sustainability issues were a key part of the company’s business strategy.

“Through an extensive engagement program over the past year, we have defined clear priorities to ensure we continue to perform well while making a real difference in people’s lives and for our planet,” he said.

The Stockholm-based home appliances firm has long been committed to sustainable technologies and practices, and by 2020 is aiming to reduce its carbon footprint by 50 percent compared to 2005.

The Swedish capital has a long tradition of pioneering environmentally friendly practices. The number of cleantech companies has boomed in the last decade while more companies across different sectors increasingly embrace a sustainable approach to business.

Another of the Stockholm-based firms with a huge global presence which made the list was H&M. The cheap ‘n’ chic retailer was also recently ranked as one of the world’s most sustainable companies in Canadian research group Corporate Knights’ prestigious Global 100 index.

“Working with sustainability is a natural part of our business, integrated in everything we do, and it is a prerequisite if we are to grow in the future,” said Anna Gedda, sustainability manager at H&M. “With our size and the impact we have, we are able to influence and create change, not only for H&M but for the industry as a whole.”

In 2010, Stockholm became the first city to be awarded EU Green Capital, the year after being crowned Intelligent Community of the Year by the Intelligent Community Forum.

Read full report here.