Only 3% of companies align sustainability to overall business strategy - Black Sun Global

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Only 3% of companies align sustainability to overall business strategy

Only 3% of FTSE 60 companies are specifically aligning sustainability to business strategy in both their reports (23% in sustainability reports, 13% in annual reports), according to the latest research report by corporate reporting specialist Black Sun.

Black Sun’s latest narrative reporting research focused on examining the disconnect between annual reports and sustainability reports among FTSE 60 companies in an effort to highlight the need for consistency across both documents.

Over 100 annual and sustainability reports were analyzed in order to ascertain their completeness in a variety of areas, namely:

  • Sustainability alignment to business strategy
  • Management commitment
  • Social, environmental and governance (SEG) risks
  • Non-financial KPIs
  • Governance mechanisms
  • Assurance
  • Communication and linkage


“We are seeing many company’s make bold claims about a ‘Responsible approach’ to business, yet when their reports are read in detail, these claims often lack substance and are in fact not aligned to overall business strategy at all.” says Sallie Cooke Pilot, Director of Corporate Reporting at Black Sun Plc.

“Our latest research also reveals compelling evidence regarding the lack of semblance between a company’s annual report and their sustainability report, particularly in the areas of risk reporting, non-financial KPIs and the strategic importance of CSR or sustainability.”

“Increasing press coverage on subjects such as climate change, treatment of suppliers and socially responsible investment, has demanded that all businesses push sustainability to the forefront of their agenda with a clearly articulated strategy which includes a commitment to acting responsibly in all business areas,” concludes Pilot.

Other key findings from the research include:

  • Only 20% of companies document (in both reports) the governance structures in place to manage sustainability within organisation
  • 30% refer to the materiality of sustainability in their sustainability report, with 8% mentioning it in their annual report and only 2% in both.
  • 35% include social, environmental and governance (SEG) risks in their sustainability report, 33% in their annual report and 18% in both reports.


Black Sun will be publishing the research report later this month.
For more information or to obtain a copy, contact [email protected].