Anthesis, the sustainability activator and the largest group of dedicated sustainability professionals globally, announces a merger with Climate Neutral Group, a Net Zero authority on emissions analysis and reduction, offsetting, and certification programmes. This merger is in response to the climate emergency and the transformational thinking businesses need to adopt during the decisive decade to limit the rising of global temperatures as outlined in the Paris Agreement and recently at COP 26.
Headquartered in Utrecht, Netherlands and with offices in Belgium and South Africa, the 50-strong firm is led by Managing Director René Toet, who will become part of Anthesis’ leadership team. Building on almost 20 years of climate solution innovation and expertise, Climate Neutral Group has supported more than 3,000 businesses with Greenhouse Gas footprinting, reduction, and offsetting initiatives since its establishment in 2002.
In addition, its ‘Climate Neutral Certified’ label, which verifies if a company or product’s CO2 emissions are reduced in line with the Paris Agreement, is becoming a market standard to help organisations report their ongoing Net Zero efforts transparently and visibly to consumers. This Climate Neutral Certification Standard appears on 30 million consumer goods and is used by food multinationals like Ahold Delhaize Coffee Company and Arla Foods NL.
An important milestone in Anthesis’ growth strategy following its investment from Palatine last year, this merger strengthens Anthesis’ full-service Net Zero offering from avoidance and reduction strategies to the provision of high-quality carbon offsetting, technology innovation, extensive project development capabilities and certification. In addition, this merger enables Anthesis to extend its international reach by entering the Benelux and South African markets. For Climate Neutral Group, its clients will have access to Anthesis’ full suite of Net Zero, ESG and sustainability services and experts across its global network.
Aligned with Anthesis’ commitment to driving impact, Climate Neutral Group has completed more than 3,750 carbon analytics and reduction programmes and offset more than 12 million tonnes of CO2e through impact-led climate projects that meet VCS or Gold Standard and contribute to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These projects include reducing deforestation and protecting biodiversity in the Maisa forest in Brazil to South Africa’s first AgriCarbon programme which pays farmers for the carbon credits they generate from their sustainable land management practices. By operating as one team, Climate Neutral Group’s projects will now support Anthesis’ ambitions of removing 3GT of CO2e for its clients by 2030.
Commenting on the merger, Stuart McLachlan, Anthesis Group’s CEO said, “2021 set a new pace for change, with organisations and communities recognising the urgency and importance of the decisive decade. With Climate Neutral Group joining Anthesis, we can support our clients more comprehensively along their Net Zero journey by building on emissions avoidance and reduction efforts to applying climate finance for mitigation. Our alignment as B Corps is a strong indicator of our shared values and focus and I look forward to welcoming the whole team to Anthesis.”
Climate Neutral Group’s Managing Director René Toet added ,“We’re proud to be joining Anthesis, a great team of dedicated sustainability professionals who share our mission to fight climate change as well as our values and commitment to the B Corp way of working. By joining Anthesis not only do we gain access to a global platform to present our Climate Neutral certification, project development and offsetting initiatives, but our clients benefit from the global Anthesis network and access to its industry leading experts. The size and ambition of the Group will create development opportunities for the Climate Neutral Group team and accelerate the impact of our work, something that is so urgently required in this decisive phase of the climate emergency.”
Tristan Craddock, Impact Partner at Palatine commented, “We’re delighted to see Anthesis Group continue its great start to 2022 with its second strategic M&A announcement of the year. Climate Neutral Group adds complementary expertise in carbon offsetting and geographical reach to Anthesis’ capabilities to help it support the acceleration of the pace of change towards Net Zero at this critical time. Supporting Anthesis’ ability to deliver its mission by accelerating its reach in new markets and services through strategic and value-enhancing mergers is a key element in our post-investment plan we are working closely with Anthesis’ leadership team to identify further mergers to complement its impressive organic growth.”
United through their B Corp ambitions, the collective offering brings Anthesis Group to 800 sustainability specialists with offices in 20 countries, driving sustainable performance for more than 2,600 clients across the world. Recognised as one of the fastest-growing private companies in the UK and Europe, Anthesis’ ambitions for 2022 are to build on its position as the market leader in sustainable performance and attract the best talent to deliver meaningful impact with the world’s largest and most influential organisations globally.
This is the 15th merger and acquisition for the Anthesis Group since it was established in 2013, and the second deal announced this year following the acquisition of Provision Coalition Inc. With this merger, DOEN Participaties, the largest impact investor in sustainable start-ups and scale-ups in the Netherlands, sells its shares to Anthesis. DOEN Participaties has been involved with Climate Neutral Group since 2002. Financial terms of the deal were not announced.