26 November 2020

The Value Reporting Foundation

The International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) announced their agreement to merge into a unified organization, the Value Reporting Foundation. Yet, another step towards a more simplified corporate reporting landscape.

In an era where the impacts of a global pandemic, climate change, and growing inequality are mounting, transparent measurement, and sustainability performance is a fundamental part of businesses. However, measuring sustainability performance is complex, it leads to a lot of confusion among producers and users of sustainability information which makes it difficult to report about non-financial information.

To resolve this confusion and simplify the corporate reporting landscape, several frameworks and standards for sustainability reporting have been developed. Recently, five global organizations that guide the majority of non-financial reporting – Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB), the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), IIRC, and SASB – announced to join forces in the Statement of Intent To Work Together Towards Comprehensive Corporate Reporting. By working together and by each committing to engage with key actors, including International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) and the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), the European Commission, and the World Economic Forum’s International Business Council, they will support businesses in finding their way through the jumble of non-financial reporting. The joint statement shows a commitment to engage with all stakeholders to achieve the globally accepted comprehensive corporate reporting system that is urgently needed.

With IIRC and SASB merging, the simplification of the corporate reporting landscape will be taken one step further. The market will be presented with a clearer solution of how to communicate about non-financial information. The Value Reporting Foundation will merge SASB and IIRC into an international organization that maintains the Integrated Reporting Framework and sets sustainability disclosure standards for enterprise value creation.

Eventually, the Value Reporting Foundation could integrate other entities focused on corporate value creation. We look forward to seeing what further steps will be taken to reach a globally accepted system for sustainability reporting.