The Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) of 60 companies that are currently members of the UN Global Compact CFO Taskforce, including Alessandra Genco of Leonardo, have declared their commitment to investing more than USD 500 billion over the next five years towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), working both in coordination and within their respective organisations to promote further integration of the SDGs in corporate finance. The CFOs have also launched a coordinated campaign with the UN Global Compact to recruit hundreds of companies that can adopt similar strategies and commitments. The announcement took place during a UN Global Compact event, Uniting Business Live (20-22 September), at the start of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. On this occasion, Leonardo has been confirmed, for the second year in a row, as UN Global Compact LEAD. Leonardo is the only one among the leading global companies in the Aerospace and Defence sector to be included in the small group of companies (37 in total) which this year includes four Italian companies.
Founded in 2019, the CFO Taskforce is the first world initiative to involve CFOs in a collaboration platform dedicated to sustainable finance supporting SDGs as part of the United Nations Global Compact.
In this context, the Taskforce CFOs also committed themselves to link close to 50% of all corporate financing to sustainability performance, with plans to issue hundreds of billions in new sustainable finance instruments, including sustainability-linked bonds. These initial financial commitments will gradually increase as a result of the initiatives taken by other companies, thanks to the promotion campaign agreed upon within the scope of the CFO Taskforce.
In 2020, Leonardo directed approximately 50% of its investments toward SDGs and, compared to average annual investments of approximately €600-700 million for 2021-2022, is committed to keeping the 50% of these in line with the SDGs, with impacts on the strengthening of innovation processes and the development of the supply chain.
The global action could potentially mobilise trillions of investment dollars annually in support of the SDGs in areas such as sustainable infrastructure, renewable energy, water, health, food and agriculture, gender, and decent work. To achieve these goals, the Taskforce has created a comprehensive management and governance framework of reference for the participating companies: The CFO Principles for Integrated SDG Investments and Finance. Until now, 71% of the Taskforce companies have committed themselves to supporting the CFO Principles, which covers SDG impact thesis and measurement; SDG strategy and investments; corporate SDG finance and SDG communications and reporting. 61% of companies in the Taskforce publicly disclose their SDG KPIs and targets, while 59% integrate the SDGs in their investor communication, and 55% publish an integrated report.
Read the interview with Alessandra Genco, Leonardo’s CFO, to find out how Leonardo interprets the concept of sustainable finance in its strategy.