Since its foundation, transparency has been one of Triodos Bank’s major objectives. It believes it is essential that depositors and investors know what happens to their money.
Meetings take place throughout the year with customers and depository receipt holders as part of this commitment to transparency. These meetings offer room for open discussions about Triodos Bank’s strategy and policy. In Spain an on and offline survey to more than 100,000 customers provided relevant information about their needs and expectations.
In 2012 Triodos Bank continued to host customer days in different places, providing customers with direct access to co-workers from across the organisation. It also arranged events for depository receipt holders in Belgium, the UK, Spain and The Netherlands.
The Dutch branch has developed ‘heart-head’ days enabling personal customers to hear how their savings are used directly from the entrepreneurs who borrow from Triodos Bank, and at the locations of the enterprises themselves.
Triodos Bank co-workers regularly attend a variety of events to meet and talk to Triodos Bank stakeholders. The Spanish branch alone attracted more than 15,000 people to 150 public conferences in 2012, while in Germany the branch co-hosted or attended over 30 events. The Belgian branch intensified its links with business clients and prospects in its sectors, by organising and participating at professional conferences and workshops. In the UK, personal customers were invited to a series of events to visit the enterprises Triodos Bank finances, to see the impact of their savings at first hand.
Triodos Investment Management also regularly hosts and participates in conferences to share leading impact investing thinking. In 2012, it was lead sponsor, and participated in, the influential Amsterdam ‘Put Your Money where Your Mouth Is Community’s Impact Investment Days’, with a focus on private wealth.
Triodos Investment Management also organised three well-attended events featuring contributions from world-renowned speakers, Paul Gilding, John Liu and Michael Masters. The talks focused on investment and sustainable development for banks and institutional investors.
The German branch co-initiated a dialogue with clients and stakeholders around the question of land-grabbing, and co-sponsored ‘Purchase of land – New forms of ownership in organic farming’, a major study under the auspices of Demeter International.
Meanwhile in Spain, the development of new online communication tools to spread Triodos Bank’s activity and make its transparent approach more visible included a new Triodos Fundación website, blogs, and an online version of Triodos Bank’s magazine.