As we celebrated Earth Day last week on April 22nd, organizations and individuals around the world honored this year’s theme “Invest in our Planet.” This theme serves as a powerful reminder of the urgent need to address the environmental challenges our planet is facing and underscores the importance of collective action to preserve our planet for future generations. It is the perfect moment to look back at the progress Mantu has made in tackling climate-related challenges and to share our decarbonization ambitions with the world.
Our first steps
Mantu conducted its first group level carbon footprint assessment in 2019. This marked our decarbonization mission’s starting point: the results of this assessment are now used as a benchmark to track our progress towards reducing carbon emissions.
The carbon footprint is calculated using three scopes: direct emissions (car fleet, AC system, gas consumption), indirect emissions (from electricity consumption) and indirect upstream and downstream emissions (purchased goods and services, energy consumption, business travel, commuting, the use of our services, etc.).
One of the most significant hurdles in running a carbon footprint assessment is ensuring accurate measurement of progress. To overcome this obstacle, Mantu adopted strict internationally recognized frameworks to measure our greenhouse gas emissions, thereby ensuring transparency, consistency, and accuracy. One such framework is the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. We also use reputable standards to set our reduction ambition, one of them being the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), which was developed in collaboration with the UNGC and CDP among others. By implementing these initiatives, we are ensuring that our sustainability efforts are grounded in verifiable data and avoid the risk of greenwashing.
Today, we continue making significant progress towards our sustainability goals though four sustainability pillars, three of which are focused on environmental and ecological concerns. These pillars are at the forefront of Mantu’s 2025 objectives:
- Environment: With a presence in over 60 countries and on five continents, Mantu generates a global carbon footprint. We are committed to reducing our emissions in all the regions where we operate and we are taking a precautionary approach that assesses all our environmental impacts and risks.
- Economics: We believe that the biggest impact we can have on people and the planet is through our brands, and therefore, our clients. We leverage our internal sustainability achievements and skills to help our clients in their own ecological transition by creating new sustainability offers and integrating sustainability into our current offering.
- Engagement: We prioritize promoting sustainability awareness among all of Mantu’s teams through supporting our people’s projects such as clean walks, reforestation volunteering, etc.
Coordinating efforts across the globe
As an international group with team members spread across the globe, we face certain challenges. However, we also have opportunities to generate significant impact. One of the main challenges we encounter is gathering data and coordinating the implementation of our sustainability initiatives. To overcome this challenge, we strive to involve different departments in the planning process to ensure stakeholders from all corners of the company take ownership and are onboard with our goals. Additionally, each brand has a dedicated representative who closely collaborates with our Group’s sustainability department.
Our approach is a combination of implementing group-level policies (conducting carbon footprint assessments, establishing sustainable procurement standards, etc.) while also giving our brands the freedom to take things a step further. We are glad to see our efforts have been met with positive feedback from our clients and stakeholders.
Engaging people at Mantu
The success of our sustainability initiatives is ultimately dependent on the level of engagement from our team members. To encourage our people to actively participate in environmental initiatives, we organize various events aimed at raising awareness about environmental issues. This includes Green IT training, Climate Fresk workshops, and themed events like green mobility challenges and sustainability hackathons. In addition, we also provide sustainable action toolkits so that our people can independently organize sustainability-related activities in their respective offices.
What will decarbonization look like in 20 years?
Today, the lack of standardized methods for tracking and monitoring decarbonization initiatives poses a significant challenge for businesses that aim to adopt more sustainable practices. However, we anticipate that this issue will be resolved in the future when governments begin to implement regulations, compelling more companies to adopt internationally recognized frameworks. The European Union has already made progress with programs such as the CSRD and the EU Taxonomy. Over time, we envision decarbonization becoming as standardized as accounting and other established business practices.
Sustainability is a business necessity, not a luxury. Much like the digital transition that occurred two decades ago, we anticipate that in the next 20 years, regulatory pressure and client demand will compel organizations that fail to keep up with environmental transition to go out of business. Regulation is just one aspect of our motivation at Mantu. We firmly believe that making changes is necessary to uphold decent living conditions on our planet.
Perfect is the enemy of good
Now that we have shared some details about our decarbonization journey, it is essential to underscore a crucial aspect. Both on a corporate and individual level, perfection can put a halt to any carbon footprint reduction efforts. Instead, the key is to initiate change and pursue gradual improvements rather than aiming for perfection at the outset. Even though we have made progress from our first steps in 2019, our journey has not been perfect and we are still learning new things and adjusting our approach every day.
Special thanks to Sustainability Director Leanne Bonhomme and Sustainability Manager Auranne Ars for sharing their valuable time and insights on the subject matter.