KUALA LUMPUR (June 15): Alliance Bank Malaysia Bhd and Sedania Innovator Bhd are teaming up to launch a fully funded programme to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) become energy-sustainable organisations.
The bank signed a memorandum of understanding with the sustainable energy and healthcare solutions provider's subsidiary Sedania Technologies Sdn Bhd for the programme, according to a statement on Thursday (June 15).
The partnership aims to bring down energy consumption of eligible businesses by 25% to 40%, with only a portion of the cost savings paid to Sedania, over a five-year period.
Sedania will be providing free maintenance and repair services as well as complimentary energy monitoring systems that will enable SMEs to monitor their energy consumption and provide the necessary data for their sustainability reporting. Through the energy performance contract, Alliance Bank and Alliance Islamic Bank SME customers will also receive a certified report card on their energy efficiency level without any payment.
“SMEs in Malaysia contribute around [70%] of all carbon emissions. At the same time, SMEs are most reluctant to adopt ESG (environmental, social and governance) practices due to cost. As an ESG enabler driven to reduce the carbon footprint, this required us to innovate a new programme which makes it easy for companies to say ‘yes’," said Daniel Rupert, the chief executive officer of Sedania.
"In this programme, the SMEs get cost reductions and new office equipment with costs borne by Sedania. The bank has a new value-added service offer, which goes beyond conventional banking services, and the environment has less carbon emissions. Everybody wins. The programme will show that ESG compliance can be achieved with tangible benefits and without extra costs,” he added.
Meanwhile, Alliance Bank group chief SME and commercial banking officer Raymond Chui Keng Leng said the initiative is aligned with the bank's four-year ACCELER8 2027 strategy plan that focuses on impelling ESG progress among its stakeholders.
The programme is expected to reduce energy consumption by 20%, and help circumvent 25 million tonnes of carbon emmissions in Malaysia per year, he added.
"Under this strategy, we are building a sustainable ecosystem through partnerships with industry leaders of ESG policymakers, certification bodies (the United Nations Global Compact, the Malaysian Green Technology And Climate Change Corporation, and Bursa Malaysia) and companies providing green products and services — to offer support to SMEs through a '3A' approach (Advocacy, Advice and Answers) — which recommends a suite of financial and non-financial ESG solutions to help SMEs successfully adopt sustainable practices in their businesses,” he said.
At the market close, Sedania was up 2.17% or half a sen at 23.5 sen, giving it a market capitalisation of RM80 million.
Meanwhile, Alliance Bank slipped three sen or 0.91% to RM3.26, valuing the bank at RM5.05 billion.