Helping businesses embrace the net positive approach
February 8, 2023
Welcome to Impact Hero
We are beyond excited to announce the launch of Impact Hero, our new brand that embodies our commitment to sustainability and social responsibility. We are ready to take our vision to a whole new level and drive even greater positive change. With Impact Hero, we're on a mission to make a meaningful difference in the world, and we can't wait to show you how.
Our primary goal is to drive positive change in line with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. Through this blog post, we'll give you a glimpse into who we are, what we stand for, and how we enable businesses to create and communicate their positive impact.
We're excited to embark on this journey with you and create a better, more sustainable world together. Get ready for an adventure that's sure to inspire and amaze.
What we do
We want to empower companies to become multipliers for positive change. That is, we help them make a positive impact on the most pressing challenges the world is facing today. We function as a B2B2C solution provider and marketplace for impact products, all of which promote the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the UN.
How everything began
We started out with GROW MY TREE in October 2020. Nadja, a mother, worried about the future of her children wanted to create something tangible to fight climate change. It was around the time when a study from ETH Zürich came out about the power of trees to battle the climate change. Dijana, on the other hand, was working on her PhD in Responsible Leadership and Business Ethics, when she realized that there is very little focus on the most urgent challenge of our times: climate change.
Over the past two years, GROW MY TREE has achieved significant impact by planting native trees in collaboration with our partners in the Global South. Through our efforts, we have not only provided long-term work and income for local farmers, but also supported education and helped maintain and enrich forestation and biodiversity. We are proud of the real impact we have made and look forward to continuing our work through Impact Hero.
Until this day, GROW MY TREE has planted over 1,8 million trees. That means we worked with over 400 companies and engaged with more than 56,000 individual customers.The following list not only reflects the inspiring story of GROW MY TREE but also the driving force behind our decision to go even further and create Impact Hero:
1,85 million trees planted mean:
40,7 million kg of CO2 sequestration potential per year
2.775+ days of education
18.500+ days of work in the Global South
9,25 million m2 of land restored
The reason we created Impact Hero
When looking at all the impact achieved and the lives changed, we quickly realized that there is so much more to do. We need to clean our rivers and oceans from plastics, we need to change the way we do farming, we need to protect our coral reefs, help support education for young people and so much more.
This is the reason we created Impact Hero: We aim to use the power of companies to create and then communicate even more positive impact on the planet. Our products and our technologies seamlessly integrate with business processes and engage key stakeholders.
Our business model is a powerful distribution strategy: B2B2C
We believe that businesses have the power to be advocates for positive change, and we provide a range of opportunities to help them achieve this goal.
We're committed to helping our B2B customers make a positive impact through their business transactions. We offer guidance on how to integrate sustainability initiatives into their operations, such as planting a tree for every transaction, collecting 5kg of plastic for every new employee onboarded, or restoring a coral for every lead generated.
In addition to product offerings, we provide our customers with certificates, communication material, and storylines to effectively communicate their positive impact. We call this the positive impact cycle, and it's just one of the ways we're empowering businesses to make a difference.
One day, every business will say to their customers:
"Every transaction of our business also impacts the world positively - enabled by Impact Hero solution"
Our impact products enable solutions in three areas:
Sales & Marketing: To incentivize engagement and purchases by integrating positive impact into the customer journey.
CSR & Sustainability: To implement positive impact solutions as part of a corporate sustainability strategy in line with the UN's Sustainable Development Goals.
HR & Employer Branding: To attract and retain top talent, and to engage employees, teams, and potential candidates by showcasing positive impact as a core value.
Our impact products
Now we come to the most exciting part, because we have greatly expanded our portfolio of impact products. Let's give you a short overview of our impact product offering:
Plant Trees: Trees have the potential to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere, making them crucial tools in the fight against climate change. But they also provide habitat for wildlife, prevent soil erosion and clean the air. We plant native tree species with our partners in the Global South and provide sustainable income opportunities
Support plastic collection: Plastic pollution is one of the greatest environmental issues we are facing since it affects all life on earth from land to the sea. Collecting and recycling it means saving ecosystems and having to produce less new plastics, thereby avoiding CO2. We work with local partners in countries in the Global South that collect plastics from the environment.
Restore Coral Reefs: 25% of marine organisms depend on coral reefs, making them incredibly important biodiversity hotspots. Restoring degrading reefs is key to keeping marine habitats and saving biodiversity. We work with local partners in countries of the Global South that focus on coral reef restoration.
Sponsor Education: Education is key to addressing environmental issues, such as climate change. Our project focuses on empowering marginalized groups, and provide green-awareness building.
Conserve biodiversity: Ecosystems such as forests, wetlands or peatlands provide not only habitat for wildlife but also play an important role as carbon sinks and climate stabilizers. Our projects focus on preventing local ecosystems from being destroyed and on protecting native wildlife by acquiring land titles.
Enable regenerative agriculture: Agroforestry systems increase carbon sequestration levels, revive soil, and restore water cycles which have been increasingly drying out. Our local partners in countries in the Global South enable farmers via training and funding to transition to regenerative agriculture including agroforestry practices, thereby increasing yields and biodiversity.
Offset carbon: We support projects that Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD), therefore ensuring that no forest gets cut which would result in CO2 being emitted to the atmosphere.
All of our project partners are based in the Global South where the need for ecological, social and economic impact is highest. We use modern and custom-made methodologies, stay up-to-date with the latest science, and utilize technology for transparency to maximize our impact.
Sustainability is becoming the new industry standard
With the pressing challenges we are facing in social as well as economic terms, and with goals like Environmental Social Governance (ESG) and SDG becoming more and more popular, companies rethink their role in society. Many are setting more nuanced, ambitious goals.
As Forbes put it:
“There’s an overwhelming demand for brands to step up. If your brand isn’t helping your consumers improve their environmental and social footprint, then you’re in danger of disappointing them.”
Millennials aim for net positive
Consumer demand requires companies to take responsibility and help slow down CO2-related climate change.
Globally, 83% of consumers said companies should only earn a profit if they also deliver a positive impact”, stated Forbes in 2020.
Millennials in the workforce seek businesses that prioritize sustainability and aim to make a net positive impact. This generation values companies that give back to society and have a positive impact, not just carbon neutrality. Companies that prioritize sustainability enjoy a 50% higher brand value among both customers and employees.
We value feedback from our customers, and we'd like to share some of it with you:
Chris Donovan, Head of CSR, Alcatel-Lucent:
"We plant a tree a month for every employee and encourage (with a voucher) every employee to plant at least one more to match. Together, we can build back our forests for the safety of our planet."
Julian Kötting, Head of Retail for The Body Shop says,
"For us at The Body Shop, the topic of sustainability has been part of our daily work right from the start. Being able to hand over GROW MY TREE certificates to our employees and thus plant trees in their name is therefore 100% in line with our values."
SDG - to what our impact products are aligned to
Impact Hero is committed to directly addressing several of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals through our impact products. Here are a few examples of how our products support these goals:
Climate Action: Our products are designed to reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change.
No Poverty: We create jobs and provide better shelter and access to food.
Decent Work & Economic Growth: We partner with NGOs that employ local farmers and villagers, promoting economic growth and creating meaningful employment.
Reduced Inequalities: Our suppliers prioritize hiring women and supporting young girls, reducing gender inequalities.
Life on Land: We help restore biodiversity and much-needed habitat for local fauna and flora through our reforestation efforts.
Quality Education: By supporting local schooling, we help empower young people and promote quality education.
Clean Water & Sanitation: Our reforestation and river cleaning efforts lead to cleaner natural water reservoirs, promoting access to clean water and sanitation.
Circular impact: Our logo
Our logo takes all these ideas of supporting the SDGs as well as our stance for alternating and continuing impacts. The colorful little pieces in a circle purposefully resemble the colors of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals-icons. Those blocks of color look like they are about to nudge each other and trickle a domino effect. This is what happens when we make a change in one thing, which sets off a chain reaction and causes a change in others. That's the power of Impact Hero.
Do you want to become an Impact Hero, too?
We hope you are excited as we are. Let's continue this journey together and let's create an even greater impact, achieve the UN SDGs, and create a fairer future. Are you in?