A Message from our CEO
I can't help but get a sense that 2021 was a watershed moment for S Factor and our 10-year mission of putting the "S" at the centre of ESG, alternative investing, and finance's future. We are proud of winning 10 significant awards for our work and, in particular, what that says about the market appetite for social data. 

This year is already shaping up to be even more incredible.

We are a part of a six-month acceleration program—with new partners UBS, StateStreet, Putnam, and KPMG—that will deliver enterprise-ready solutions to the marketplace through rapid-fire incubation, investment, and scaling initiatives.

Beyond the recognition of S Factor's groundwork, there are clear market signals for growing interest in social data, such as the alternative investment industry's priority focus on developing social taxonomies, implementing social policy, and cooperation on advocacy and regulations.

We see compelling evidence that embedding social criteria into understanding financial returns is becoming a default norm: 
  • Multiple governments are ratifying modern slavery acts. 
  • Activist hedge funds and fund managers are driving change. 
  • Retail investors are looking for solutions to meet their clients’ needs.

Perhaps our most notable achievement this year will be the release of an externally validated white paper, “The Material Alpha in Social Factors.” The document provides a deep dive into our methodology for POC alpha generation platforms and excess returns. Stay tuned to read our perspectives about this rapidly evolving social accounting practice.

We're excited for the opportunities ahead and grateful that you are here to participate in the journey.
Bonnie-Lyn de Bartok
Founder & CEO
Takeaways from January
Why the S in ESG is Finally Being Recognized as a Key Performance Factor
Too often investors focus only on the E and the G when discussing ESG investing: the environmental and governance factors.

But what about the S factor, and why should investors and advisors care? Bonnie-Lyn sits down with sustainable finance podcast host, Paul Ellis to explain why S is getting noticed now, and how machine learning and big data is helping investors to reduce risk and improve performance.

What's the Difference Between ESG & Impact?
While environmental social governance and impact investing are sometimes used interchangeably, their are some key differences.

Investors want see their money go towards a company that will benefit financially, but may also want the values of that company to be aligned with them as well. Does the company have a set of criteria that focuses on prosperity and the environment? Or do they just have a set of goals in mind to help with their mission?

On the global categorization of ESG versus Impact funds
It’s exciting to finally see the public markets defining what ESG regulation looks like, rather than the companies themselves.

Historically, how investors and companies report E,S, and G has been scattered with interpretation. The overall confusion has stemmed from a lack of knowledge on how to measure outcomes-based results.

The evolution of regulation across these issues has not been tied to ESG or impact investing before. Regulators, governments, and international frameworks are rapidly advancing towards a global standards that defines what that criteria is for ESG.

Still today, impact is whatever the ‘reporter’ says it is.
Why ESG companies outperform the competition
ESG companies outperform their competition because ESG is a litmus test for strong management and the culture that resonates throughout an organization on social issues. 

What we’ve seen specifically throughout COVID-19 is the companies that had very strong social management practices in place – beyond a well-wordsmithed policy and more into validated material operational efforts – have been the most resilient throughout the pandemic in terms of managing their employee populations and the effects on the community. It is just the beginning.
More Industry News
Advancing Your ESG Reporting Strategy

Companies within and across sectors are raising the ESG bar with greater transparency and a commensurate focus on underlying performance. Whether your goal is to be recognized as an ESG leader, function as a well-governed company that manages ESG risks and opportunities, or simply avoid the bottom quartile of ESG ratings, you can advance your reporting strategy.
Parent Company Direct Liability For Overseas Human Rights Violations: Lessons From The UK Supreme Court 

Impunity for human rights violations by corporate actors is a profound and pervasive injustice in the globalized world. Transnational business frequently operates in places where victims cannot get access to remedy in local courts. There is no international forum that provides an alternative path to justice.
Artificial intelligence: The rise of the responsible robots

Stories of a world where computers break free from their human creators and take over the world have always captured our imagination.

But reality could soon surpass those tales of the tyranny of almighty cyborgs.

Certain limited relief can be found in the new book by James Lovelock, the legendary scientist behind the Gaia hypothesis.
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