Sustainability pays off. This is our conviction and had been so ever since the company started in 1992 under the previous name Caring Capitalism (later renamed CaringCompany). The same year that the UN environmental conference in Rio de Janeiro called for an expanded perspective on environmental issues – “sustainability” – also including social issues.
The founders Magnus Furugård and Susanne Nyman had both been aware of the way the wind was blowing during their time at Greenpeace in the late 1980s. On a study trip to the United States in 1992, they found many concrete examples of a new form of environmental and social commitment in businesses, integrated with commercial activity and leading to improved profitability. What today is called Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
The discovery of this new trend led to many puzzle bits falling into place. The founders’ background in economics, management and journalism enabled them to see an opportunity to bring the concept of sustainability in a completely new way to the players who are perhaps most able to contribute to a better world: businesses and investors. And to help them do it.
In 2003, CaringCompany changed its name to GES Investment Services, in order to concentrate our trademarks and at the same time underline our role as a service company for investors.
Concurrently with our 20th anniversary in 2012, we refined our company trade mark further to GES®, standing for Global Engagement Services which is our core business today and where we believe the future of RI is.
Our company history is deeply intertwined with the history of CSR and Responsible Investment and we are honoured of having shared this development with so many visionary pioneers. Some milestones:
Screening assignment for first Swedish ethical fund with human and labour rights criteria, WASA U-hjälpsfond.
Assisted KPA Pension in becoming Sweden’s first pension company offering only ethical investment.
Developed norm-based screening model SSE (Svenska Statens Etik) for Swedish national pension fund AP1.
Set up engagement service Active for AP1.
Acquired Swedish research firm Etikanalytikerna and norm-based screening model Global Ethical Standard® – developed with Swedish national pension fund AP7 – which was upgraded with the SSE model.
Set up GES Engagement Forum, an unprecedented client interface for active ownership.
Set up GES Burma Engagement Service.
Won IPE-TBLI ESG Leaders Award for “Best ESG consulting/research house” based on e.g. “its unique and noteworthy client-focused platform GES Engagement Forum”.
Formed strategic partnership with oekom research.
GES strengthens market presence in Australia and New Zealand
Opened office in London and launched new service – Stewardship and Risk Engagement.
Voted Best Engagement Service Provider in the IRRI Survey for 2015.
Launched five new themes as part of the Stewardship & Risk Engagement