FRANKFURT, Germany, LONDON and MUNICH, July 18, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Arabesque S-Ray, a leading global data provider of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) metrics, today announced strategic partnerships with four new co-investors: Allianz X, Commerz Real AG, DWS Group, and Land Hessen. Allianz X led Arabesque's Series A funding round, with the four shareholders jointly investing $20 million.
Using ESG big data and machine learning models, Arabesque S-Ray provides technology that is used by many of the world's largest institutional investors, corporations, and consultancies to assess the sustainability performance of over 7,000 companies globally. The new strategic partnerships will allow Arabesque S-Ray to enhance its client relationships and expand its business by developing new ESG data products and services to meet growing global demand for sustainability information. This will include S-Ray Real Estate, an AI-based tool for evaluating the sustainability of real estate objects. The technology will use traditional data sources on an asset-level, together with new emerging digital sources from Internet of Things (IoT) sensors and devices within buildings.
"The issues of climate change and human rights, as well as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, are now widely understood throughout society. And the financial sector can make a decisive contribution to a more sustainable economic system," said Andreas Feiner, CEO of Arabesque S-Ray GmbH. "The demand for ESG data and services is increasing exponentially. Our partnership with three of the leading financial institutions in Germany, together with the state of Hessen – with its focus on sustainability and technology – will enable us to meet this global demand from Frankfurt."
"Sustainability assessments are becoming increasingly important for making informed investment decisions, including our own. We believe in an accelerated growth trajectory for Arabesque S-Ray due to its strong position in the growing ESG data and consulting market, and superior tech capabilities," said Dr. Nazim Cetin, CEO of Allianz X. "Allianz's commitment to environmental, social, and governance issues means we integrate ESG into our core business decisions. Our performance in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index reflects this, with Allianz topping the list as the most sustainable insurer in 2018 for a second consecutive year."
Andreas Muschter, CEO of Commerz Real, said: "Alongside digital transformation, the responsible use of the world's precious resources is the dominant topic of our age. As a specialist for real assets we have the opportunity, and also the responsibility, to make a significant contribution to sustainability." In addition to performance promises, returns, and costs, Commerz Real expects it to become a key indicator for customers and investors in their purchase or leasing decisions. "In this respect, Arabesque S-Ray is a perfect example of how digitalisation acts as a catalyst for the swift implementation of sustainability," added Muschter.
"Sustainability is at the core of what we do," said Asoka Woehrmann, CEO of DWS. "We want to continue to deliver new solutions to our clients and make even better investment decisions for them in this paradigm-shifting era. Our investment in and cooperation with Arabesque S-Ray is another step for DWS towards taking a leading position in the field of sustainable investment."
Mr Tarek Al-Wazir, Hessian Minister of Economics, Energy, Transport and Housing, said: "Stopping climate change and its dramatic effects requires enormous investment that is not achievable without private capital. Investors, however, need to be able to recognise whether their investments are indeed sustainable or simply a product of "greenwashing". Transparent criteria and tools for decision-making are therefore crucial elements in attracting private investment. That is one of the goals of 'Green Finance Clusters Frankfurt e.V.' I am pleased that our involvement in Arabesque S-Ray will contribute to its growth in Frankfurt. The government of the Hessian State has a strong interest in ensuring that the leading financial centre of the eurozone is also at the forefront of green finance."