Barco accomplished another step in its sustainability ratings. With an upgrade in the MSCI ESG rating from A to AA, the company is now in the top 12% sustainability performers in the industry. MSCI is a global rating agency. Its ESG rating is designed to measure a company’s resilience to long-term, industry material environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks. The ratings range from leader (AAA, AA), average (A, BBB, BB) to laggard (B, CCC). Barco’s first assessment in 2015 resulted in a BBB rating, which was improved the following year to A. The new step-up to AA is a nice reflection of Barco’s efforts in the sustainability domain, including the increased transparency and reporting, and recognizes Barco as a leader in managing the most significant ESG risks and opportunities.
The upgrade from an A to AA rating is driven by improvement in the category “clean technology opportunities.” The company not only has a structural strong investment-level in R&D (13% of sales in 2020), but recent innovations also show significant positive environmental impacts. Energy-efficient technologies such as LED and laser light sources in projectors help customers realize a big drop in their power consumption and footprint compared to lamps. Barco also offers solutions that limit their travel needs. The weConnect virtual learning solution, for example, offers an in-classroom experience to remote students, taking away the need to physically move to the campus. This is especially interesting for corporate education, in which employees often traveled the globe to attend a training.
Another example are Barco’s hybrid solutions, including ClickShare Conference. Barco says they were designed to facilitate collaboration between people in the office and homeworkers — a hot topic in times of lockdowns Also simulation solutions (enabling e.g. full-fledged flight training without planes taking off or consuming kerosene) contribute to Barco’s ability to let customers shrink their ecological footprint. Also the introduction of the Barco ECO label, which encourages R&D to include environmental thinking into every step of the design process, makes sure the company couples customer value with ecodesign.
“Improving our MSCI ESG rating to AA proves that Barco’s sustainability strategy is gaining momentum”, said Jan De Witte, CEO at Barco. “I see it as an important focus point, and it is increasingly becoming part of our company DNA. These progressive efforts are not only visible in our product designs and corporate decisions, but also in our reporting. All these things together are clearly appreciated by the professional rating agencies, and rewarded with a rating that puts us in the top 12% of our industry!”