Corporate Social Investment – A missed opportunity to create shared value

According to a global study of nearly 30 000 respondents by Accenture Strategy, 62 percent of consumers said they would pay more – or even accept a product of lower quality – should the brand represent ethical values and demonstrate authenticity in all its actions. Speaking after the launch of a nationwide grassroots tennis development initiative in Soweto, Regan Adams, CEO of innovative consumer finance business RCS – a subsidiary of BNP Paribas, said that organisations can no longer afford to view corporate social investment (CSI) as a nice to have – but rather a business imperative.

Adams said that only sustainable companies – underpinned by responsible business practices – will be in a position to use CSI to gain a competitive advantage in the future. He mentioned that companies are under increasing scrutiny from both the public and consumers to demonstrate a shared value approach – that is identifying and addressing various social problems that intersect with their business – and create a win-win scenario for all stakeholders. “Corporate social investment can’t begin and end with a company announcing their involvement in a community project and writing out a cheque. Authenticity is important, and half-hearted initiatives that don’t have the support of the corporate mission will do more harm than good. Without a sense of purpose, no company can achieve its full potential,” Adams said.

Adams further stated that heightened social awareness is also evident when potential recruits assess their employment options.

Click here to download the media release and to read more about the benefits of social investment.

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