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Case Study

Making Impact Data Accessible to Investors

By January 10, 2022January 26th, 2022No Comments

Our Client’s Challenge

Innovation Edge, an impact-first investor focused on solving early childhood challenges in South Africa, faced a challenge with presenting their impact data to local and global investors with varied interests and expectations. “Our first dashboard was static, and we found it challenging to accommodate the diverse interests of our investors,” says Sonja Giese, Executive Director of Innovation Edge.

Sonja Giese, Executive Director of Innovation Edge

Innovation Edge’s data universe was further complicated as it consisted of 40 unique data points, coming from different sources and with varying time frequencies.

The challenge was therefore how to standardise impact information for multiple users without compromising the local context from which the data originated. When measuring ESG and impact, context is key. EBS Advisory’s customised reporting and monitoring solution, ESG Active, allows the consumer of information to affect the context in which the data is being assessed. This creates better insights for the user and prevents duplication of efforts when preparing reports for different stakeholders.

Example of database management

How EBS Approached this Solution

EBS determined the best solution for Innovation Edge was to collate their impact data from investee companies into one central database, to make management decisions in real time on existing investments, and to identify risks and opportunities. We gathered these data points through a combination of interviews and surveys designed for their stakeholders and investee companies.

Once we mapped the data universe, we then programmed queries to automate the collection and processing of this data, from the respective sources, into a central repository within PowerBI, a Microsoft tool. We then created a relational data model, pulling out key descriptors to serve as aggregators and disaggregators of information within Innovation Edge’s reporting framework, which allows data to be sliced and diced at varying levels of granularity.

Example of a model
Example of a dashboard

Lastly, we designed bespoke report pages, with interactive dashboard functionality. The look and feel of the report pages, visualisations and navigations were built to spec. The reports were then published to an online location, from where they can be shared with different stakeholders at varying levels of access restrictions.

The importance of ESG Data Quality:

“The process of collecting data is critical, because if the data inputs are of a poor quality, the efficacy of any reporting undertaken is affected,” says Chesney Huskisson, ESG Analyst at EBS Advisory. “Part of our process involves formalising and standardising inputs. We also incorporate validation mechanisms to ensure data is coming in clean and with minimal error. This increases the quality and consistency of the data inputs, which in turn improves the quality of the outputs.”

Our Client’s Experience:

“With ESG Active, our investors, board of directors and international advisory group are now able to obtain real time data on our open and closed active portfolio as and when needed, creating greater transparency and accountability,” says Giese. “Additionally, through unique combinations of variables, they are able to filter and engage with the data in ways that are meaningful to them and that have the potential to generate insights of value to us.”

Giese adds, “We also use the ESG Active dashboard internally, as a tool for the team to access portfolio insights and observe trends. This is useful in helping us to focus our sourcing tactics, to triage portfolio support needs, to inform our investment priorities and to support pipeline building.”

“I love the fact that it offers such flexibility in terms of filters,” says Giese. “It conveys an incredible amount of information in a single interactive graphic, is customisable in terms of branding, offers various options for downloadable reports, and enables us to track user engagement.”

About ESG Active

Experience advanced business analytics and interactive dashboard reporting, through our software-enabled monitoring and reporting solution that is customised for each client’s needs: ESG Active. This solution constitutes a basket of integrated software-enabled tools, customised for the purpose of conducting ESG and Impact monitoring and reporting activities.

ESG monitoring and reporting can be repetitive in nature and time consuming. ESG Active, however, is a unique and valuable resource that automates the process. It analyses and delivers quality data visualisations for a company’s specific needs.

To schedule a personalized demo of ESG Active, click here.