Venture capital is looking more into your company’s sustainability performance

Impact investing: money with purpose

Sustainability in general, and The UN Sustainable Development Goals in particular, make for good business. And some investors have recognized that for quite some time – since 2004, to be precise. When the UN started conversations with a number of global stock exchange operators, corporate social responsibility hit the radars of listed corporations. In 2012, Nasdaq (USA), B3 (Brazil), Johannesburg Stock Exchange (South Africa), Borsa Istanbul (Turkey) and The Egyptian Exchange made a public commitment to advance sustainability in their markets. It was the first step in the Sustainable Stock Exchanges initiative (SSE), a UN-led global movement which now counts more than 80 members from all continents.

In the past few years, the SDGs have boosted the discussion on corporate sustainability and the role of companies in building a better business culture with a stronger positive impact on society. More importantly, the SDGs were eventually adopted by many companies to be an integral part of their sustainability plans as a major performance target. Since then, a number of studies have related SDGs to business performance, proving that gender equality, investments on education and fair wages lead to a more competitive society and, thus, to more sustainable businesses.

More recently, venture capitalists have been looking more closely into sustainability practices before deciding which companies to invest in. With the help of UN agencies, Social venture funds and social impact-driven investors networks were set up to prompt companies into improving their CSR practices while pursuing their profit-making operations. The recently launched UNDP SDG Impact program is a good example of how to channel private investment and capital to meet the SDGs, via providing funders with roadmaps and data on the best investment plans.

Initiatives like HoryouToken are also a worthwhile alternative for all investors to consider, from big corporations to private investors, owing to its Blockchain technology which provides transparency and traceability with proof of impact, resonating with the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainability is now. It’s profitable, it can help change the world and build better times for all.

For decades, Japan has been known for its solid, predictable financial landscape built on aversion to risk and long-term returns. As a result, according to a Deloitte report, it’s been striving to attract investors and venture capitalists. Yet, in the last few years, the Japanese have been facing a much-welcomed revolution caused by fintech, a market that, in 2021, will be 15 times bigger than it was in 2015. The reason is that the fintech scene has been evolving thanks to a few factors that are key to the success of entrepreneurs in the country:

Photo: Miyabi Inoue

Support from the government – The Japanese Ministry of Economy understands that emergent fintech companies will bring innovation, competitiveness and jobs. In a recent publication, the ministry commits to a more modern regulatory framework, promoting such innovations as application programming interfaces (API) and Blockchain and electronic data exchange (EDI), especially among small and medium-size companies.

New regulation – In March 2019, the Japanese authorities set new rules for the Blockchain and fintech markets, offering more security and transparency to investors. The government is also studying new regulations for banks, which would potentially help new competitors, especially the ones involved with emerging technologies.

A strong ecosystem – Recently-founded associations such as Fintech Association of Japan and hubs like Finolab are helping to create a strong ecosystem of companies, united to learn from and help each other.

Investors – Japan is one of the most important business & tech hubs of Asia, as well as a safe haven for low-interest rates seekers. It is also a forward-thinking country known for its innovative companies. These unique characteristics attract investors who are looking for disruptive but safe projects to fund.

Want to know more about Japan, the host country of SIGEF 2019? Follow our posts on Horyou blog.

SIGEF 2019 will take place in Tokyo on 18-19 September.

The Asia Pacific Summit takes place in Singapore and will discuss the developments and trends of the Blockchain Financial Industry

Chain Plus will take place in Singapore from 11-12th April

What do top investment institutions, start-ups, traditional financial giants and disruptive entrepreneurs have in common? They all are looking at Blockchain finance. The financial industry is most likely the first area where Blockchain will be widely used, according to the Ethereum co-creator Vitalik Butarin. It has developed many purposes and today, it can have even a social impact. One example is the recently launched HoryouToken, the ‘Blockchain with a Purpose’ which supports and promotes social and economic inclusion.

2019 Chain Plus Asia Pacific Blockchain New Finance Summit, which will be held in Singapore on April 11th-12th, intends to discuss the main advances of the Blockchain Finance and uncover the new trends in the industry. Speakers on Chain Plus will include: Piotr Jan Pietrzak, chief innovation officer at ING, the world’s 11th largest asset manager; Zhukuang Lee, head of product innovation at Standard Chartered Bank, Kelvin Tan, head of capital market innovation & technology operations department of DBS bank, the largest commercial bank in Singapore and Andrew Pudovikov, software development engineer at the blockchain laboratory of Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned commercial bank.

In addition to big banks and investment institutions, cryptocurrency exchanges, venture capital firms and government officials will also attend, as it covers almost the entire ecosystem of Blockchain. Global leaders from around the world will attend to discuss and present various topics about the Blockchain industry, cryptocurrency, decentralized networks and finance. Attendees will gain a wealth of insights and information about the state of the Blockchain industry through discussion and networking parties.

Horyou is pleased to act as a media partner of the Chain Plus Asia Pacific Blockchain New Finance Summit. As a gift to our community, all Horyou members can profit from a free ticket – apply for it using the promotional code TBGC0314 at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2019-chain-plus-asia-pacific-blockchain-new-finance-summitsingapore-tickets-55261439453

The Alpine winter was not hard enough to cool off the world’s most important economic forum

Horyou team was in Davos, Switzerland

Every year, the World Economic Forum is a most awaited event – the freezing Swiss town of Davos is the place where world leaders and their finance ministers take the stage to ‘seduce’ investors and commercial partners. 2019 WEF was no different as it set the tone for all conversations and debates for the year to come. And Horyou team was there. As for some of the main outcomes of Davos:

1. The ubiquitous AI – Artificial Intelligence has been a hot topic for some years at the WEF, but in 2019 it is a star. Its technology is everywhere – in our homes and our workplaces, and it is helping shape the world we live in and how we see it. For some firms, like Reuters and Majid Al Futtaim’s shopping mall, the forum was a platform to launch their AI solutions.

2. Clean energy now – Even oil-based economies agree that it is important to consider alternatives. Climate change and investor pressure are pushing companies to re-think their strategies and invest in the production of cleaner energy with help from more technology.

3. Blockchain is the name of the game – Speaking at the Blockchain Economic Forum, Horyou’s founder and CEO, Yonathan Parienti, presented the concept of Blockchain with a Purpose and HoryouToken. As a disruptive decentralized technology, Blockchain is impacting not only the financial system but also the healthcare, philanthropy, and insurance industries among others. And the World Economic Forum gave it an important exposition.

The Blockchain Economic Forum took place in Davos from 24-26 January

4. The future of work – It’s already happening. Humans and machines now coexist at the workplace. Companies and countries are discussing the possibility of designing strategies to make this transition smooth and collaborative, without threatening jobs and incomes.

5. Environment matters – The WEF opened its stage to Sir David Attenborough, who was awarded for his lifetime contribution to the promotion of the protection of animal life, as well as Prime Ministers Jacinda Ardern, from New Zealand, and Mark Rutte, from the Netherlands, who spoke about the urgent need to protect the environment. The private sector also showed its engagement with the cause of the planet – a group of 50 CEOs working across 150 countries met to discuss ways to reduce emissions.

6. SDGs in the Spotlight – Besides setting a dedicated area for the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the WEF nurtured many debates around them. On the Forum’s platform for public-private cooperation, business projects were presented on topics including sustainable consumption and production, mental health, youth empowerment and disability inclusion.

Want to know more about HoryouToken and how Horyou supports the SDGs? Follow us on our social media channels and on Horyou, the social network for social good.
Be the change, be Horyou.

Horyou is in Davos and has a lot to say about sustainable development

Sustainability has gained momentum on the WEF

It’s the 21st century and, more than ever before, economic development can’t dispense with sustainability. And the World Economic Forum in Davos is the right place to foster the UN Sustainable Development Goals as key to economic prosperity.

Horyou is there to talk about a most disruptive if innovative technology, namely the HoryouToken*, a cryptocurrency for Inclusion and Sustainability built on the concept of Blockchain with a Purpose. Horyou was invited at the Blockchain Economic Forum, taking place in Davos from 24-26 January to demonstrate in which ways HoryouToken can support and foster the SDGs. With a significant high profile audience, the event gathers heads of States, alongside government officials, investors, entrepreneurs and leaders of the new economy to review cutting edge topics in panels and roundtables, or during evening receptions and speed networking breaks.

Yonathan Parienti, founder and CEO of Horyou, is a speaker at the Blockchain Economic Forum in Davos

Yonathan Parienti, founder and CEO of Horyou, underscored the potentially strong impact of Blockchain technology on the UN Sustainable Development Goals to democratize the otherwise hectic funder/funded process. “It is not about speculation but about Blockchain applications with real value to society via providing support to constructive initiatives aimed at promoting sustainability and inclusion. Everyone can be a force for good, everyone can share inspiration and be a change agent”, he asserted.

A Spotlight on Climate Change and Environment

Prince William interviews Sir David Attenborough

This year, the World Economic Forum has provided a larger space to sustainability, proving that the global leaders are showing more concern to the future of our planet. Thus the presence of 92-year-old naturalist Sir David Attenborough, hardly a self-serving political star, who evoked the future of our planet in an interview with Prince William. “We have to recognize that every breath of air we take, every mouthful of food we take, comes from the natural world. And if we damage the natural world, we damage ourselves. We are one coherent ecosystem. It’s not just a question of beauty, or interest, or wonder – the essential ingredient of human life is a healthy planet”, he uttered.

Davos and the 2021 Sustainability Strategy

Davos, Switzerland

Since 2015, the WEF has developed a Strategy for 2021 that aims to ensure a highest level of sustainability for its offices and events, as well as to strengthen the integration of sustainability practices into its business processes and global operations. The strategy covers six priority areas comprising air travel emissions, sustainable design and branding, low impact ingredient catering, supply chain, natural energy resources and work-safety practices. Last year, the ISO 20121 meeting became independently certified “sustainable event management”. The Forum has since followed a strict methodology to set sustainability into its internal policies and processes, covering a range of event and activities, ranging from the materials used for temporary structures and decoration, to energy use, food and beverages, waste management, and transportation. In addition, the Forum has sought to ensure equitable procurement policies, fair employment practices, health and safety of its staff and participants, and meaningful engagement with local communities. The Annual Meeting’s carbon footprint is also measured and compensated for in an internationally recognized manner: having calculated the event’s footprint, the Forum then compensates it by buying the corresponding amount of carbon credits from South Pole, which supports emissions reduction projects.

* HoryouToken is listed on LAToken and CoinTiger

It’s not just about cryptocurrencies and tokens: It’s about Blockchain causing a social revolution

We’re in 2019 and if you’ve still not heard of Blockchain I would assume you’ve been out of this planet for a while. The disruptive, innovative technology that is essentially known for revolutionizing the financial world through cryptocurrencies has been a hot topic since 2017 when Bitcoin value reached a peak and all investors wanted to set foot in this promising market.

Yonathan Parienti, founder and CEO of Horyou, presents HoryouToken

Since then, a lot has happened: While pioneer cryptocurrency Bitcoin was jumping up and down, new cryptocurrencies were created whose outlook and fate look promising though not totally clear, let alone assured, subjects as they are to the vagaries of the volatility of speculative markets. It is in that context albeit with the aim of staying above the turmoil, that HoryouToken was launched last December to support and promote social and economic inclusion, as well as propose a fresh approach to the cryptocurrency industry which posits that Blockchain can and should come with a Purpose. Thanks to a traceable and intelligent philanthropic feature called Proof of Impact that enables each Blockchain transaction to support social good causes, it allocates resources to social entrepreneurship projects, non-profits and social good doers, and members of the social network for social good, Horyou.com.

The United Nation Sustainable Development Goals

The idea behind the creation of HoryouToken is that Blockchain can advance the UN Sustainable Development Goals, via social impact and economic redistribution. More specifically, it can impact SDG1 (No Poverty), SDG2 (Zero Hunger), SDG8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth), SDG9 (Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure) and SDG10 (Reduced Inequalities).


Yet, there are many other uses for Blockchain that are not solely connected to cryptocurrencies. Social entrepreneurs may find a world of possibilities within the technology, ranging from supply chain solutions, to management of unnecessary waste and pollution (SDG12), strengthening democracy, reinforcing government institutions and fostering transparency (SDG16).

 

Contracts, data sharing and copyright issues would be safer and broker-free, which would reduce costs and increase access to services. E-government is a fine example. Having long invested in technology and adopted Blockchain since 2012, Estonia is now considered as one of the most unbureaucratic, smart states in the world. It is attracting new tech businesses and investors, developing workforce and turning into a more sustainable community (SDG11).

Healthcare has also made interesting use of Blockchain, with digital records starting to be adopted all over the world and hospitals, cities and countries using them as a safe if smart way to handle health data.

So, what does the future hold for Blockchain technology? Experts point to a clear social impact, with improved security, as well as compliance and traceability of goods and people. This would translate into healthier food through Blockchain in the supply chain and transportation, fair wages and the end of forced labor through smart contracts. And, of course, more functionalities for social-oriented cryptocurrencies and tokens to promote a fairer and more inclusive world. All reasons why for us HoryouToken, which by nature is the embodiment of Blockchain and cryptocurrency for social good, is a subject of pride.

HoryouToken is listed at at LAToken and CoinTiger.

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