Antler is helping thousands of founders across six continents to launch and scale companies that are addressing the pressing challenges of our time.
In this guest post, Rosalind Bazany, Head of ESG and Impact at Antler, shares the investment firm’s journey to define a climate strategy and inspire portfolio companies to follow its lead.
Antler understands the importance of companies and people doing what they can to reduce carbon emissions. Our first goal was to better understand our carbon footprint and this starts with measurement. This exercise helps us become more informed and, in turn, allows us to make more conscious decisions about our operational practices in the future.
Only once our carbon footprint is known can we then think about a strategy to reduce and mitigate it. This could include reducing unnecessary travel, energy efficiency improvements in our offices, choosing carbon-neutral service providers, or simply creating awareness among our team members.
“As an active owner, we want to inspire our portfolio companies to see the importance and business value of defining a clear climate strategy.”
In August 2022, Antler partnered with Pathzero, a carbon management platform dedicated to measuring and managing corporate and financed emissions, to gain deeper insights into our emissions profile across office locations.
Pathzero is an Antler portfolio company that was launched from one of our earliest residencies in Australia. Pathzero has ranked #12 in The Daily Telegraph’s list of top 50 Australian startups, 9th in Deloitte Tech Fast 50 Australia Rising Stars category, and are one of Dealroom’s top 100 impact companies to watch.
There are many carbon management platforms in the market, but we wanted to use a platform that closely aligns with our future goals.
"Establishing a firm-level footprint is important to begin with, but over time we wanted a single platform that could also provide visibility on our financed emissions across our portfolios."
Pathzero’s platform provides a tailored solution for investment managers and places great importance on using globally recognised carbon standards. Pathzero’s user experience is unrivaled and the combination of their digital platform and hands-on consultative approach aligned well with the needs of Antler’s local offices.
Antler worked closely with the Pathzero team over three months to measure our corporate carbon emissions in accordance with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol (GHG Protocol). We completed analysis on our Scope 1 (direct emissions), Scope 2 (purchased electricity), and Scope 3 emissions (indirect emissions).
Antler intends to conduct a yearly emissions disclosure quantifying the CO2e emissions from our operations (excluding the early-stage portfolios). The disclosure serves as a base from which we have set and can follow up on if we choose to explore a net zero climate target in the future.
The GHG disclosure has been carried out in accordance with the GHG Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard.
The 2021 Antler organisation carbon footprint assessment consisted of eleven active locations (Singapore, Netherlands, UK, Australia, US, Germany, India, East Africa, Norway, Denmark, and Sweden).
We engaged Pathzero to verify that the operational emissions boundary was defined accurately in accordance with the GHG Protocol using financial data. All Scope 1 and 2 emissions and all relevant Scope 3 emissions are included in the measurement.
The result was 1895 tCO2e.
Singapore’s variance on measurement is due to the operational expenses of Antler’s funds and shared global expenses being attributed to this location as it is Antler’s headquarters. We therefore excluded Singapore from the emissions intensity across full-time employees for a more accurate representation below.
Antler's carbon footprint findings
"Antler is a growing company, which will inevitably lead to greater emissions, but being able to track our outputs will mean we can concentrate on outlier offices or operational activities where a reduction strategy will have the most meaningful effect."
We commit to continuing to evaluate how to improve our environmental efforts and drive development in our industry. We are also keen to encourage individual action from our workforce and are exploring ways to do this more proactively.
In August 2022, Pathzero announced the introduction of Pathzero Navigator, a carbon reporting and analysis tool created specifically for financial institutions to measure, manage, and disclose the financed emissions of their investment portfolios.
This innovative tool has allowed Antler to quickly access a Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF) aligned overview of its financed emissions, highlight areas of concern, and take a risk-based approach to reducing financed emissions.
"Pathzero Navigator has enabled Antler to focus on the portfolio companies that represent the highest potential risk within our portfolio."
Antler can then collaborate with these portfolio companies to identify how they might reduce their emissions, for example looking at their supply chain approach.
Portfolio companies can then feed their reported carbon data into Pathzero Navigator, improving the integrity of financed emissions data and providing the platform and common language required for joint decarbonisation actions.
ESG transparency and corporate disclosures are expected to continue to increase. There are myriad acronyms that investment managers turn to for data methodologies or reporting requirements—TCFD, GRI, PCAF, SASB, to name a few.
Consulting each of these groups, the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) aims to bring about global standardisation for the investment industry ESG disclosures.
In October 2022, they voted unanimously for the requirement of company disclosures on Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3 GHG emissions, applying the current version of the GHG Protocol Corporate Standard.
"Measurement and reporting on sustainability metrics is complex and challenging. Having the right partners providing support on this journey is crucial for a VC firm to improve the accuracy of its data and stay up to date with new standards."
2022 Antler ESG and Impact Report
This story originally appeared in the 2022 Antler ESG and Impact Report — exploring VC firms as an engine of global transformation. In the report, Antler share’s learnings on how VCs can focus on creating sustainable value from the outset and celebrates the work of portfolio companies in this space.
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