A merger between the International Integrated Reporting Council and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board announced Wednesday will give investors and companies a unified sustainability reporting framework.
The merger of San Francisco-based SASB and London-based IIRC into the Value Reporting Foundation is a response to calls from global investors and corporates to simplify the corporate reporting landscape and provide a clear way to communicate sustainability issues that drive enterprise value, the organizations said in a joint statement.
The merger is expected to be finalized by mid-2021, SASB CEO Janine Guillot, who will head the new organization, said in an email. The new organization will retain the two previous headquarters.
In an era where the impacts of a global pandemic, climate change and growing inequality are intensifying, intangible value and the need for data-driven sustainability information have grown in importance. Capital markets demand evidence-based, market-informed and transparent data in order to deliver long-term value to shareholders while also helping secure the future of our people and our planet — reporting is an important means to this end," the organizations said in a joint statement.
Robert K. Steel, chairman of the SASB Foundation board, said in the statement that "capital markets are hungry for information linked to enterprise value creation, but they cannot easily digest what comes from a fragmented reporting landscape. This merger is an important step towards businesses and investors communicating with clarity and ease about the issues that matter most to financial performance."
Mr. Steel will co-chair the new organization along with IIRC board member Richard Sexton.
IIRC CEO Charles Tilley said that rather than reporting for reporting's sake, "our focus is on ensuring businesses have effective governance over enterprise value creation factors and that investors are able to fulfill their role as stewards. We will continue to advance integrated thinking to achieve this."
Mr. Tilley will serve on the board of the Value Reporting Foundation and chair its framework committee.