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Client demand fuels Cundall ESG advisory growth

Asia 17 May 2022

Due to the growing demand for specialist ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) consulting services, Cundall’s Perth-based Principal Sustainability Consultant Madlen Jannaschk has been promoted to lead the Asia-Pacific (APAC) ESG Advisory. Coinciding with this appointment, Cundall has also published The ESG Playbook (and why you need one), authored by Jannaschk.

ESG metrics are increasingly becoming central to decision-making for the world’s most substantial investors. The momentum and what it means for organisations across the economy is highlighted in this comprehensive new publication. 

Cundall’s ESG advisory engages with clients across the Asia-Pacific region and beyond to provide the strategic insights, planning and implementation pathways that will enable asset owners, portfolio owners and large investors to effectively address ESG considerations.  

“Many of our clients have portfolios that include assets around the world. The work we are doing as a company is global, and the goals of ESG, particularly in relation to mitigating climate change, are also a global effort,” Jannaschk said. 

Garrit Schot, Cundall Partner and Managing Director (Australia) said, “We have been seeing enormous demand for our ESG expertise. Madlen is an exceptionally experienced leader in this space, with an outstanding track record of working with clients and projects to reduce environmental impacts while improving commercial outcomes.”  

Jannaschk explains the ESG lens is risk-based thinking that reflects the business world’s acute appreciation of the material, financial and reputational risks associated with climate change. 

“We are seeing more impacts from climate change such as bushfires, floods and heat waves, and that has triggered a heightened risk awareness,” Jannaschk says. 

The heavyweights of the investment world are taking notice - and starting to apply pressure on the enterprises they engage with. 

“Investors such as Morgan Stanley recognise that there is a real risk to their investments if climate change hits even harder than it has already, and they therefore expect the companies they invest in to mitigate their risks, for example, attaining net zero status.” 

There are also risks associated with shifts in markets and changing business models – coal in on the way out, and renewables are ramping up. In Australia, the prospect of border carbon taxes is potentially going to impact investments in local assets and products. 

Other elements of ESG such as a focus on human health and wellbeing, Fair Trade and transparency around compliance with relevant standards are also coming into focus. Some of this is a demand-side pressure, Jannaschk says. 

“Customers are questioning products more - asking where they come from and how they are made. In the case of buildings, purchasers and tenants want to know how efficient they are and how much they will cost them in the future in terms of operational expenses if they buy or lease them. Companies and local governments have recognised that both customers and investors are changing, and they are changing in response.” 

“ESG principles are no longer an add-on, they are understood as adding value for investors and asset owners when applied as an integrated and holistic approach to doing business. To find out how, download the ESG playbook here The ESG Playbook (and why you need one) - Publications - Cundall  

About Madlen

Madlen Jannaschk joined Cundall after more than a decade as a practicing Architect and project manager. She holds qualifications including a Masters of Architecture and Masters of Environmental Economics, is an endorsed One Planet Integrator, Green Star Accredited Professional and Registered Consultant for Climate Active Carbon Neutral Organisations.  

Read more about Madlen here: Madlen Jannaschk - People - Cundall