Animus Sustainability Portal

Animus Sustainability Portal

Cambridge, United Kingdom
Year Founded:
2013
Organization type: 
for profit
Project Stage:
Start-Up
Budget: 
$10,000 - $50,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Animus Sustainability Portal (ASP) is a multi-platform embedded with 3 main tools aimed at improving business sustainability and in process create shared value with communities in which they operate whilst minimising impact on environment and society. Our online technology helps business to engage with think-tanks, manage supply chains and engage communities and in process brings about the much required transparency.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

We could help end the use of slavery and child labour in complex supply chains
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Business is struggling to effectively map their materiality especially as they drive towards more efficient systems aimed at reducing impact on environment and society. They also face a challenge of increasing transparency within their supply chains given the complexity and tiers involved. On the other hand communities lack platforms to engage business effectively and ensure companies are accountable for actions ie, recent VW scandal. Various communities have had to fight business in courts to pay for either pollution control, loss of lives amongst other litigations.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

We provide Think Tank, Employee Welfare and Community Platform all with an impact on business and community. The Think Tank provide value for companies as; they understand how brands manage their supply chain through collaboration, increased efficiency and resilience whilst the Employee Welfare Platform will especially benefit clients who run multi-national cross border companies by raising transparency of life issues within their workplaces including health and safety, worker retention, forced labour or slavery and child labour. Through our Community platform, we invite other stakeholders to the conversation including representatives from NGOs and community groups as well as subject matter experts advocating on any given issue as a way to build bridges between companies and the communities impacted by their operations.  
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

I am Joseph Abo I live in the delta region of Nigeria. As long as we have lived here, our communities continue to live in hazardous conditions due to ground and air pollution caused by Shell. I participate in the community platform managed by ASP. Various other people from the region have sent various comments on impacts caused. ASP consolidates the discussion and summaries key takeaways and infographics that are presented to shell to highlight impact. In UK, Shell is being taken to court by communities who are disgruntled by the companies lack of engagement and failure to put mechanisms and interventions that reduce pollution. Shell is noticing the importance and role of community platform in ensuring it meet expectations from the areas it operates.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

ASP platforms are pre-development, however the Thinktank, and Employee Welfare have raised interest from companies who see it as value adding and a way of getting their sustainability strategies right from onset whilst managing associated risks. We are discussing projects with various sectors from extractives to FMCG. In the UK, for example, from 2015, any company with a turnover of more than £36 million is legally required to report on slavery in the supply chains. A recent workshop carried out by Innovation Forum in London shows that most business will find it hard to comply with the anti-slavery requirement as it is involving and complex. ASP offers an opportunity to alleviate such complexities by deploying both a real time data collection technology and as well collaboration with various Non-Governmental organisations working in the developing counties. A failure by business to report on slavery will cost them millions in fines.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Our target is to penetrate all African countries, and communities. The confirmation for the emergence of a sustainability market in Africa has been made by several reputable surveys from independent companies.Surveys done by leading institutes like Accenture and Ernest and Young EY shows that the market of sustainability reporting and portals in Africa is more than US$1 billion. ASP will attend various events in different sectors and in some instances deliver key notes to build awareness and knowledge of the system. We are also working on extending partnerships with various institutes especially NGOS operating in developing countries.
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Our company revenue will come mainly from memberships and projects. The membership follows a subscription model based on the tier the client wishes to pay for. To fully build the software, we have approached the foundation east to help finance the development. Once the software is done and we have built a bit of traction we can seek for further investment and grants.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Various companies are working on communicating sustainability from 3BL media, CSRwire, Ethical corporation. The likely competitors in Africa include APO, CSR in Action, Thistle. Most platforms are web based and dont harness the mobile technology or crowdsource opinions from stakeholders. However, the work of competitors is limited to development of sustainability reports or engagement with corporate companies. We have brought various services to our portfolio and one main distinct being that our business model offers dynamic communication between corporates and communities. The work of most of the likely competitors is in many instances limited to development of sustainability reports or engagement with corporate companies.
Team

Founding Story

Codra spent years working in African environment and especially with communities living at the interface with business; ie. extractives. Most often communities were at the receiving end of information from other stakeholders. Sadly most often the communities lacked platforms to raise their voice with business, government in real time. Hardly were there any media channels connecting them to the outside world. However, with the coming of mobile technology, everything changed. The communities were soon interconnecting via mobiles. With this came a thought of harnessing the technology and create a platform for community’s voice, embedding as well the real time data on slavery.

Team

Codra Masiiwa and Ronald Chawatama are co-founders of Animus Sustainability. The two are currently responsible for developing projects and managing. ASP is also working with developers who are being co-managed by a technological firm; Valin Technologies. ASP is also putting together a board of advisors with experiences in sustainability, human resources, finance and contacts in industry. Currently ASP is working with advisors from Social Incubator East, UK.
Background
Please confirm how you heard about the Unilever Awards:

We are part of the mail network, so we got the news about the awards through email

Please confirm your role in the initiative (eg Founder/co-Founder) and your organisational title:

Director/Cofounder

Which of the 8 UN Global Goals (Sustainable Development Goals) pre-selected for this competition does your solution relate most closely to? [select all that apply]

No Poverty, Clean Water and Sanitation, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Responsible Consumption and Production, Climate Action.

Leadership and the Unilever Awards
Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.

The company has a team with combined experience of more than15 years working in the sustainability environment. We have done various work for various companies at project level and we have created a reputation for ourselves. We have a wider network of sustainability professionals and some level of interaction with potential clients which is ideal to initiate sales. We are working with a well experienced and networked advisory board. Through our team and as a company we have carried various work and consultancies including the below;

Chapter contributor for the book ‘Land Policies for sub-Saharan Africa’
Sub-Consulting Editor for the Zambezi Regional Overview Chapter
Sub-Consulting Editor for the World Bank strategy document; Growth and recovery potential in Zimbabwe
Coordinated and managed the development of environmental indicators for southern Africa
Set up a Geographic information systems database for southern Africa
Local content development for Kenmare Mining in Mozambique
Sustainability communication strategy for Endeavour Mining

Beyond your existing team, who else are you working with to achieve your objectives, eg partners, advisors, mentors?

Mark Goodson; Business Advisor Social Incubator East
Belinda ; Business Advisor Social Incubator East