Carbon Analytics, my first venture, has been running since late 2013, started by myself and co-founders Michael Thornton and James Tilbury, and accompanied later in 2014 by former MBA class mate Colin MacLaughlin.
The company was founded on the premise that business is an incredibly powerful tool to effect positive change on hairy problems like climate change. Where a company chooses to source its goods and services can ultimately determine whether its an environmentally responsible or an indifferent supplier that stays in business.
We set out to provide companies with the insight they need to make informed decisions about the suppliers they choose.
Along the way, we quickly learned that the companies who had the fewest options when it came to understanding their environmental impact were small businesses. Large corporates, through public pressure and regulation, have been able to hire consultants, and purchase expensive, bespoke enterprise systems to understand and improve their environmental performance. Small businesses, in contrast, were largely left out of the conversation, despite compelling stats that show they comprise 50% of GDP (49.8% in the UK, to be exact).
Our platform seeks to change that. Just as Xero has transformed the accounting space, and Square has made even the smallest vendor able to accept credit cards, our web platform enables even the smallest supplier to quickly assess their environmental impact, identify how it can be improved, and share their progress with their customers. This fills a data-void, giving meaningful benchmarks to enterprises to reward environmentally responsible suppliers, and puts pressure through the supply chain for companies to compete on sustainability.