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Sustainable Companies Outperform Peers During Financial Crisis

atkearney209A.T. Kearney announced findings in a new report which showed that companies focused on sustainability outperformed their peers by 15%  during the financial crisis.

The report, titled “Green Winners: The Performance of Sustainability-focused Companies during the Financial Crisis” (pdf) looked at 99 companies with a strong commitment to sustainability as defined by the Sustainability Index and the Goldman Sachs Sustain Focus List.

Over the six months from May through November 2008, the study found that in 16 of the 18 industries studied, companies committed to sustainability averaged $650 million more than the industry average in protected market capitalization per company.

Dr. Daniel Mahler, author of the study, said, “We find common characteristics among the leading companies that show that sustainability goes far beyond the narrow definition of being environmentally friendly.”

These characteristics include:

  • A focus on long-term strategy, not just short-term gains
  • Strong corporate governance
  • Sound risk-management practices

The firm released a study in 2007 revealing that while 60% of companies have sustainability strategies, only 36% have applied it to their supply chain. EL has reported in the past on A.T. Kearney’s ‘carbon-neutral consulting.’

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2 thoughts on “Sustainable Companies Outperform Peers During Financial Crisis

  1. Thank you for the update but the link to the actual is not working and I cannot find it online. Can you please provide the report?

    • Thanks for letting us know. Perhaps the report moved since we first published this. I have updated the link above, so it should work now.
      Tamar Wilner
      Senior Editor

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