Industry Market Trends

Sustainability Spotlight: Novo Nordisk Named the "Cleanest Capitalist"

Jan 26, 2012

Spearheaded by Corporate Knights, a Toronto-based media, research and financial products company focused on clean capitalism, the "Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World" is an extensive data-driven corporate sustainability assessment and ranking that is announced each year during the World Economic Forum in Davos.

This year, Novo Nordisk, a Danish pharmaceutical firm, earned the No. 1 ranking for their "triple bottom line" philosophy of financial, social and environmental gains. After joining the Climate Savers Program of the World Wildlife Fund, they pledged to reduce CO2 emissions from global production by 10 per cent by 2014 without relying on carbon offsets or buying power from existing renewable sources. Novo engaged with a local utility to help them identify energy efficiencies, and in return agreed to buy electricity from a wind farm under development in the North Sea. Novo also demonstrates social responsibility by selling insulin to poor countries at reduced prices and financing education on diabetes prevention and treatment in China.

By cournty, The U.K. led the way with 16 companies on the Global 100, followed by 11 Japanese firms, eight French and U.S.firms each, and seven from Australia. U.S.-based companies on the list include Life Technologies, Intel, Agilent, Johnson Controls, Proctor and Gamble, IBM, Baxter International, and Prologia.

The firms are chosen using a two-step process. About 4,000 developed and emerging companies are trimmed down to the Global 400. From there they are ranked based on 11 key performance indicators chosen by Corporate Knights Capital's research criteria, including resource productivity, leadership diversity, executive compensation in relation to the average worker, safety, and innovation.

Here are the top 20 companies on the Global 100. For more information, see the full report at

1. Novo Nordisk A/S (Denmark, Health Care)

2. Natura CosmeticosS.A. (Brazil, Consumer Staples)

3. Statoil ASA (Norway, Energy)

4. Novozymes A/S (Denmark, Materials)

5.ASMLHolding NV (Netherlands, Information Technology)

6. BG Group Plc (United Kingdom, Energy)

7. Vivendi S.A. (France, Telecommunication Services)

8. Umicore S.A./N.V. (Belgium, Materials)

9. Norsk Hydro ASA (Norway, Materials)

10. AtlasCopcoAB(Sweden, Industrials)

11. Sims Metal Management Ltd (Australia, Materials)

12. Koninklijke Philips Electronics NV (Netherlands, Industrials)

13. Teliasonera AB (Sweden, Telecommunication Services)

14. Westpac Banking Corp. (Australia, Financials)

15. Life Technologies Corp. (U.S., Health Care)

16. Credit Agricole SA (France, Financials)

17. Henkel AG & Co. KGaA (Germany, Consumer Staples)

18. Intel Corp. (U.S., Information Technology)

19. Neste Oil Oyj (Finland, Energy)

20. Swisscom AG (Switzerland, Telecommunication Services)