BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE,BIG DATA MANAGEMENT,DATA SCIENCE
ACA Group | September 26, 2022
ACA Group (ACA), the leading governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) advisor in financial services, today announced that it has acquired Ethos ESG (Ethos), a provider of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) ratings data and software for financial advisors, asset managers, institutions, and investors.
This acquisition marks ACA’s first analytics offering, which will be paired with ACA’s ESG experts to form an integrated tech and advisory offering under the ESG Advisory practice. ACA’s existing ESG Advisory practice supports with a range of programmatic needs for firms that integrate ESG into their business or investment activities. This currently includes advice and implementation support around strategy, policies/procedures, regulations and frameworks, training, and external reporting, among other areas. With Ethos, ACA’s clients will now also be able to easily analyze investments and automate several elements of ESG reporting.
Founded in 2019, Ethos offers an interactive platform that allows for the evaluation of over 350,000 impact ratings including companies, stocks, and funds through a prism of 45 ESG causes such as climate change, racial justice, mental health and more. Providing full transparency into how each impact score is calculated and the ability to upload portfolios and create models, Ethos allows for GRC professionals to understand the ESG characteristics of their investments and make responsible decisions that align with their firm's values and ESG commitments.
Ethos uses a proprietary set of approximately 100 underlying databases to generate its ratings. These databases provide a unique impact view of ratings, as well as provide insight into key metrics where available. The databases are fully transparent, so clients can see which underlying database source for each data point. Ethos also has capabilities developed to quickly scrape the public domain for material publicly available information to include in the ratings. These state-of-the-art capabilities allow Ethos to quickly add company coverage to help clients achieve full coverage of their investment portfolio.
Ethos has invested in innovation through the recent launch of its Impact Calculator, an embeddable widget that takes a dollar amount and immediately calculates the real-world equivalent impact of investing that amount in a specific fund or other product, compared to a benchmark.
Additionally, Ethos recently introduced its Carbon Neutral Certification program for mutual funds and ETFs, developed in conjunction with Change Finance. Through the certification, Ethos performs an independent analysis of a funds carbon footprint (covering Scope 1 and Scope 2 emission) and carbon credits (offsets) to verify whether the fund is carbon neutral during a specified period.
“This is an exciting step in helping to grow our presence in the ESG space and is ACA Group’s first foray into analytics as a service,” said Shvetank Shah, CEO of ACA Group. “We are invigorated to be building out and launching our data capabilities, starting with Ethos ESG. Combining data with our scalable solutions will continue to empower our clients to reimagine GRC and protect and grow their business.”
“We are thrilled to partner with ACA Group, as their brand and reach in the GRC space is well-known. “Not only is taking into consideration the ESG impact of your decisions right on its merits, but greater transparency into ESG issues helps firms mitigate risk and make informed choices while growing sustainably.”
Luke Wilcox, Founder and CEO of Ethos ESG
“This pairing will help us to leverage data in a new way to help firms of all sizes develop and monitor their ESG programs to mitigate risk, make informed choices, combat greenwashing, and grow profitably and sustainably in the process. Access to high-quality, transparent ESG data is an essential part of any ESG endeavor, and our partnership with Ethos will allow us to build and protect our clients’ ESG strategies in ways few others can,” said Dan Mistler, Head of ESG Advisory at ACA Group.
About ACA Group
ACA Group (ACA) is the leading governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) advisor in financial services. We empower our clients to reimagine GRC and protect and grow their business. Our innovative approach integrates advisory, managed services, distribution solutions, and analytics with our ComplianceAlpha® technology platform with the specialized expertise of former regulators and practitioners and our deep understanding of the global regulatory landscape.
About Ethos ESG
Founded in 2019, Ethos ESG provides data and analytics for financial advisors, asset managers, institutions, and investors. With over 350,000 impact ratings of stocks and funds across 45 causes, Ethos ESG helps firms offer robust impact reporting, monitor and address sustainability risks, and enhance quantitative research and modelling with transparent ESG data.
BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE,BIG DATA MANAGEMENT
Dataddo | September 28, 2022
Dataddo, an SaaS startup that provides an automated, no-code data integration platform, today announced the launch of its Free plan—the first-ever free data integration plan with no extraction limits. This is a no-investment way for any professional, regardless of technical skill, to access and start working with data from disparate sources. The plan comes as a response to company cultural obstacles that hinder adoption of data initiatives within organizations across industries, such as low data literacy.
For at least the last five years, the grand majority of leading companies across industries has been investing in data initiatives, with the percentage today being as high as 97%. Yet only 26.5% of these companies claim to actually be data-driven.
Mounting evidence suggests that the main reason for this discrepancy is company culture, meaning both lack of executive buy-in on initiatives and lack of employee confidence in data skills. In a recent survey by Accenture of 9,000 employees from companies across industries, nearly three quarters of respondents (74%) claimed to feel “overwhelmed or unhappy when working with data.” This is critical because, as Gartner states, “the real drivers of [data-driven culture] are the people.”
Dataddo’s Free plan aims to help businesses overcome these obstacles by making it easier for them to share data and familiarize employees with visualization tools before investing in paid tools. The plan is the first free data integration plan on the market that puts no cap on extraction limits, and it can be used for an unlimited period of time.
Under the plan, subscribers can access any ten of Dataddo’s 200+ connectors and automate the synchronization of any volume of marketing, sales, financial, and other cloud data to up to three dashboarding applications and/or Google Sheets weekly. The company offers a growing library of free templates for popular dashboarding applications, enabling professionals with any level of data skill to start analyzing immediately.
The platform is SOC 2 Type II certified and compliant with all major data privacy laws around the globe, including ISO 27001, GDPR for Europe, CCPA and HIPAA in the US, LGPD for Brazil, POPIA for South Africa, and more.
BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE,BIG DATA MANAGEMENT,DATA SCIENCE
Makersite | September 28, 2022
Makersite, a world leader in bringing sustainability and cost insights into the early stage design process for the world’s leading brands, today announced partnering with Autodesk, the leader in product design software. The new partnership combines Makersite’s environmental impact and cost data with Autodesk Fusion 360’s product design data.
Sustainability begins at the heart of the product: its design phase. Still, less than 1% of products have sustainability as a design parameter. Even though the general public’s wish for sustainable products grows and emission regulations worldwide are becoming more and more, incorporating sustainability at the design level has been a challenge for most product designers in the past. Makersite’s partnership with Autodesk is changing this.
The new Fusion 360 plug-in features:
Allows designers to have Makersite instantly calculate the environmental and cost impacts of their design at the push of a button
Gives Fusion 360 users access to over 300 materials, cost, and sustainability insights based on the used structure, materials, and weight
Provides enhanced data sets on over 50 decision criteria such as compliance, risk, health, and safety in real-time
With this ground-breaking approach, product designers will no longer depend on experts or consultancies to design sustainable products. Instead, enterprise manufacturers will be able to use their own material masters and procurement data to enable teams to work toward sustainability goals led by design. This integration will enable more sustainable and successful designs, eliminate duplicative efforts and decrease time to market.
“The stats tell us that 80% of the ecological impacts of a product are locked down in the design phase. Therefore, the design phase of a product is the first and most necessary stage to get more sustainable goods into the world successfully,” shares Neil D’Souza, founder of Makersite. “However, eco-design is only feasible when designers have data about the sustainability of their product and its compliance, costing, environmental, health, and safety criteria. By integrating our data, AI, and calculation engines into Fusion, product designers are provided with clear and actionable insights so they can decide how to make their designs more sustainable,” D’Souza concludes.
“It’s Autodesk’s intent to make designing for sustainability easily accessible, and ultimately intuitive, to product designers,” said Zoé Bezpalko, Autodesk Senior Design and Manufacturing Sustainability Manager. “By partnering with Makersite, we’ve created a holistic workflow within Fusion that provides insights into sustainable design directly within the design environment. Data-driven analysis from Makersite will enable manufacturers to make better decisions about creating safer, more sustainable products,” she said.
“Companies are setting ambitious sustainability goals at high levels, sometimes as required by policy, but increasingly due to customer demand and as a source of competitive differentiation. The data that drives achieving those goals are often in disparate systems throughout the organization,” said Stephen Hooper, Autodesk Vice President & General Manager, Fusion 360. “We’re connecting relevant LCA data to the Fusion design workspace to help manufacturers meet their important sustainability goals,” said Hooper.
Autodesk will hold its premier annual conference for product designers and manufacturers, Autodesk University, in New Orleans September 27-29, 2022. Makersite will take the stage with Zoé Bezpalko to present the plug-in to attendees during the conference.
Makersite's SaaS platform delivers enterprise digital twins to enable change in complex business environments. By intelligently mapping customers' product data via AI with live data from 140+ supply chain databases, Makersite instantly delivers deep-tier supply chain twins with 90%+ accuracy. Customers can assess the digital product twins across 30+ business criteria such as risk, sustainability, compliance, and cost. The platform has many applications, helping global enterprises build resilient supply chains, accelerate product innovation, and achieve NetZero.