3521 CB Utrecht
Tel: + 31 (0) 30 216 2758
CHIEF SUSTAINABILITY OFFICER
Report created by Aastha Srivastava
Rabobank is a Dutch multinational bank, with its headquarters situated in Utrecht, Netherlands. Rabobank provides financial services and represents itself as a global champion of food security and agricultural financing. Boiled down to three words, Rabobank claims to prioritise sustainable agricultural financing.
On top of the 89 local branches, Rabobank is increasing their global financial operations. Rabobank provides services to approximately 10 million customers spanning across 47 countries.
Rabobank prides itself on its differences from the standard cooperative bank, noting again that its priorities are agricultural finances and the local Dutch population.
Rabobank discusses investments into sustainable welfare within the Netherlands and how this is beneficial for the broader countries’ finances.
Company Sustainability Activity
Rabobank approaches sustainability through the lens of food security and how it is relevant to the growing global population.
Food security is fundamental to Rabobank’s journey toward being a sustainable bank.
Rabobank notes its cooperation between customers and social partners and how this relationship inspires sustainability value chains and acknowledges the need for a circular economy.
Rabobank also highlights their desire for sustainable living in the Netherlands, specifically efficient energy supplies and consumption.
- Integrate material sustainability criteria in business decisions and commercial activities.
- Encourage and support clients to improve their performance in a way that contributes to their business success and to society and the environment.
- Terminate relationships with clients that do not meet the requirements outlined in international or national legislation and regulations and those that are unwilling to change their undesired practices within an agreed timeframe.
- Not lend to, or invest in, specific activities and industries as defined in the Rabobank Exclusion List.
- Promote inclusive business models.
- Address the topic of sustainability in recruitment and training processes.
- Reduce emissions of operations by 20% per FTE compared to 2018.
- Increase average energy label for their portfolio to a B.
- Increase average energy label to an A.
- Build a total of 15,000 sustainable and energy-efficient homes, specifically for mid-income renters.
- Make all Rabobank’s commercial real estate 100% green.
- Generated €500 million from the Rabobank Green Bond
- In 2019 they supported a total of 28,006 social initiatives within the Netherlands
- Including 182 new local cooperatives in renewable energy, local partnerships in healthcare and fiber optic internet
- Supported 281 international social initiatives in countries within the Global South
Developed partnership with the WWF
- 2017: 174,374
- 2018: 144,347
- 2019: 126,441
- 2020: 82,678
Rabobank does not have any sustainability-related certificates.
UN Sustainable Development Goals
UN SDGs Compliance
SDG 2: Zero Hunger
- Rabobank has signed a new partnership agreement with The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).
- To help rural communities benefit from more inclusive, sustainable food systems.
- Rabobank participates in the Farm to Market Alliance which aims to link 1.5 million smallholder farmers to markets (output, input, financial markets and knowledge)
- Rabobank is financing €103.1B in the Food & Agri sector, a contribution that helps to boost the world’s food supply.
SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy
- € 3.6B in investments in sustainable energy generation, especially in wind and solar projects, but also biomass and geothermal energy.
SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
- Providing 18.1M customers in developing countries access to banking through Rabobank’s partner banks.
SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
- In 2018, Rabobank offered 25,000 customers a home scan through its GreenHome partnership.
SDG 12: Sustainable Consumption and Production
- Rabobank participates in nine round tables focused on sustainable value chains.
SDG 13: Climate Action
- Through its Rabo Impact Loan, Rabobank invested EUR 143M in sustainable frontrunners whose efforts benefit the environment.
SDG 15: Life on Land
- Rabobank, UN Environment, FMO and IDH launched the AGRI3 Fund that aims to unlock USD 1B in capital for the transition toward sustainable agriculture.
SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals
- Rabobank partnered with the World Wide Fund for Nature on the sustainable production of sugarcane in India, palm oil in Indonesia, soy in Chile, dairy in the Netherlands, and salmon in Chile.
- Rabobank participates in the World Economic Forum and is part of its global System Initiative on Shaping the Future of Food Security and Agriculture.
Rabobank is committed to contributing to the sustainable development of society in the financial, social and ecological sense. Rabobank has laid out achievable and clear targets for the future in line with its Climate Strategy. Rabobank’s reporting measures are noteworthy.
By integrating material sustainability criteria, Rabobank will be on track to meeting its goals to reduces emissions and increase its energy label.
As a financial services provider, Rabobank focuses on the SDGs which are most clearly connected to its financial products and services. Rabobank has formulated four strategic priorities which help shape its cooperative bank’s mission of ‘Growing a better world together. By focusing on these priorities, the firm makes a meaningful contribution to the UN SDGs.
It is evident that Rabobank is on the road to sustainability. However, the firm has invested $8.207 B in the fossil fuel industry since the adoption of the Paris Agreement. While it has decreased its investments in 2020, its contribution to the fossil fuel industry must be considered in the rating.
Therefore, this company has been rated a C.
Analyst Outlook: Neutral
Rabobank’s focus on agricultural finance to ensure food security is admirable, but this information is not readily available and nor is it accessible to the individual customer.
The bank can receive a higher rating if it continues to divest from the fossil fuel industry.
- No green certificates