“Responsibility is a way of respecting our heritage”

Responsible investments have been one of the cornerstones of Hartwall Capital’s operations from the very beginning. In recent years, we have made efforts to integrate the sustainability aspect even deeper into our strategy, as well as to develop tools for effectively managing the portfolio companies’ sustainability strategies and operations through active ownership. One of the results of our efforts is our recent Responsible Investment Policy, which sets out clear guidelines for Hartwall Capital as well as our portfolio companies.

View our Responsible Investment Policy here (PDF)

Responsible investing is about taking the environment, social and governance principles into account in everything we do. Our sustainability approach is deeply rooted in the values of the Hartwall family: social responsibility is one of the most important values of our owner’s and thus, has guided HC’s operations from the very beginning. Our focus is on building sustainable companies and managing them well in order to create value for our owners, environment, our employees as well as other stakeholders. 

– We make choices that improve our society and promote welfare. Letting environmental and social responsibility guide our investments and ownership practices is a way of respecting our heritage, says Antonia Hartwall, representative of the Owner’s Council and member of the owner family’s seventh generation. 

In 2020, Hartwall Capital signed the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) and became a member of FVCA, the industry body for the Finnish venture capital and private equity industry. The partner organizations function as additional support for the development of our processes and for increased transparency, among other things through the best practice and well-proven reporting models the partnerships provide access to. The memberships also allow us to observe the development of ESG-related matters in the investment industry in general as well as provide us an access to the forums in which these matters are discussed and further developed. Hartwall Capital is also a member of the FVCA’s ESG Committee. 

– Through responsible investments, we can contribute to a more efficient resource management, sustainable value creation as well as sustainable development, says Peter Therman, Chairman of the Owners’ Council and Deputy Chairman of Hartwall Capital’s Board.  

– Strengthening our ESG-related processes is a contemporary theme. We are not unique in our endeavour: investors are increasingly looking for investments that actively work for a more sustainable future and can offer solutions that have real, tangible positive impact. Sustainability isn’t a niche anymore, says Antonia Hartwall.  

Sustainable investments play an important part of the companies’ risk management processes due to their lower risk profile – however, the lower risk here does not imply lower returns but the contrary. There are several reasons why a strong ESG focus has a positive impact on the financial results. Credibility in sustainability issues, among other, support expansion into existing markets and gaining foothold in new ones. The sustainability requirements placed on suppliers are becoming increasingly stringent – meeting them creates competitive advantage and enables greater strategic freedom for a company.  

– Several sustainability aspects are also directly linked to reduced costs: energy efficiency and a reduced amount of waste and packaging materials, for example, says Peter Therman. 
Focus on sustainability also offers additional personnel related benefits such as attractive recruitment proposal, more motivated staff, and lower staff turnover.

– Integrating a well-thought-out sustainability strategy into the business has no disadvantages whatsoever. We are in the fortunate position that we do not have to start from scratch or make expensive investments to bring our and the portfolio companies’ operations to a sustainable level: Hartwall Capital has a strong background in the area and our recent Responsible Investment Policy has a natural place in our operations, to support our high ambitions, says Antonia Hartwall.