Insight: Our approach to the triple bottom line
Our approach to the triple bottom line: Across all companies in the Sullivan Street Partners portfolio, we require a sustainable and well-balanced approach to company strategy. Language nuances change depending on the sector and the organisation we inherit at acquisition, but the goal always remains the same: drive growth that positively impacts the interconnected triple bottom line of people, profit, and the planet.
Richard Sanders, Managing Partner and Co-Founder, shares: “I’ve faced many questions about how to make sustainable goals work, and how to strike the balance between generating profits and doing the right thing. The truth is, for the vast majority of businesses, there is significant scope to improve operations whilst also driving positive impact for people, profit, and the planet. We don’t think about them in separate buckets, but rather as a comprehensive package.”
The Wave, one of Sullivan Street’s flagship portfolio companies, was founded with the use of the triple bottom line. The company prioritised the development of a solar farm on site, ahead of the energy crisis, which has reaped significant financial benefits. During our partnership, we’ve modified customer service duties to combine positive social impact with sales responsibilities, finding common processes to make both more effective. These successes and improvements demonstrate how this set-up is an effective and simple means of ensuring balanced considerations in decision making and informing company strategy.
As stewards of our companies, we comprehensively review environmental, employee, and financial performance to develop bespoke plans for change. We consider all stakeholders in these interventions and state the impacts holistically so that, together with management, we can make informed decisions. This takes no longer than a narrow focus on profit and is simply a mindset shift.