Latest
issue
GET SPA BUSINESS
magazine
Yes! Send me the FREE digital editions of Spa Business and Spa Business insider magazines and the FREE weekly Spa Business and Spa Business insider ezines and breaking news alerts!
Not right now, thanksclose this window
Uniting the world of spa & wellness
Get Spa Business and Spa Business insider digital magazines FREE
Sign up here ▸
News   Features   Products   Company profilesProfiles   Magazine   Handbook   Advertise    Subscribe  
Ask an expert
Environmental, social and governance

Companies without ESG credentials are getting left behind, as investors and consumers increasingly spend their money with environmentally conscious, ethical businesses. Kath Hudson takes a closer look at how spas can catch up


Environmental, social and governance (ESG) is important for all sectors, but it’s especially pertinent for spa stakeholders whose mission is to improve quality of life.

Following the pain of the pandemic, ESG could be seen as less of a priority, but it’s set to become increasingly important in terms of getting debt, investment and customers.

According to money experts, investors are now analysing non-financial factors to identify risk and growth opportunities. And ESG drives risk resilience. They recognise that companies that measure these metrics are ahead of the game in terms of any legislation and taxation which might be coming down the tracks and companies that can manage, predict and prepare for disruptions are positioned to thrive.

In addition, stakeholder capitalism – a philosophy based on the belief that companies have an obligation beyond providing returns to shareholders – is now gathering pace.

As well as making companies a less risky investment, ESG aligns with investors’ values, when they want to be seen as ethical. Pressure is also mounting from consumers who want to feel good about where they spend their money, as well as from governments.

The EU’s new carbon tax (see www.hcmmag.com/cbam) shows Europe is taking tough action on climate change.

Figures from Sustainable Wellness, formerly the Sustainable Spa Association (see opposite), suggest the spa industry is still behind the curve. So how can operators get started? We ask the experts.

Read more about how the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals apply to the spa and wellness sector: www.spabusiness.com/sdg

Lucy Brialey
Co-founder and director, Sustainable Wellness
PHOTO: Sustainable Wellness

ESG and CSR (corporate social responsibility) are increasingly essential and it’s a significant advantage for all businesses to implement strategies promptly, as a team effort throughout the entire organisation.

Sustainability should be viewed as a multifaceted endeavour requiring identification, monitoring, measurement, improvement and reporting. As consumers prioritise their environmental and social impact, spa businesses aligning with ESG principles can bolster their reputation, attract diverse clientele and also mitigate operational risks related to sustainability.

The level of ESG adoption in spa businesses varies. While our membership grew by 73 per cent in 2023, only 19 per cent show a commitment to structured sustainability measurement and education. Suppliers are notably more diligent, displaying enthusiasm rather than apprehension. Of our new members, 65 per cent are in the supply chain, 21 per cent are operators and 14 per cent are consultants, industry associations or academics.

Standalone, small to medium-sized hospitality chains and suppliers have been quicker and more successful in implementing ESG initiatives. Their key drivers are to meet market demand, improve team education and attract talent. International wellness and hospitality giants often focus on in-house reporting without third-party verification, lag in adopting social ESG practices and are driven by impending regulatory pressures. Nonetheless, the trend towards responsible business practices is growing industry-wide.

By its very nature, ESG creates diversity and inclusion across a business. All team members can contribute to a sustainable future, enhance brand image and advocate its values to attract environmentally and socially conscious customers. This, in turn, ensures long-term economic success in a changing business landscape.

Sustainable Wellness’ recommended steps towards ESG:
Environmental Responsibility

• Implement energy-efficient practices

• Reduce water consumption and waste

• Promote circular economy values

• Pay attention to responsible procurement

Social Responsibility

• Promote diversity and inclusion

• Provide sustainability and wellness training

• Support local communities

Governance

• Establish transparent corporate governance

• Ensure ethical business conduct

• Align team compensation with departmental or company-wide ESG goals

First steps:

• Collaborate with organisations offering ESG guidance

• Assess your current ESG performance

• Consider annual ESG reporting

• Set clear, measurable, time-bound ESG goals

• Engage stakeholders for insights and support

• Educate and train your staff

• Continuously improve your local and global environmental and social ESG initiatives

While our members grew by 73 per cent in 2023, only 19 per cent are committed to sustainability measurement and education
Consumers want to feel good about where they spend their money / photo: shutterstock/Pheelings media
Jeff Smith
VP of sustainability, Six Senses
Credit: Six Senses

We can’t be well while living in an unwell world, so any business not taking ESG into consideration is at risk of falling behind. Across Six Senses we operate with sustainable operations guidelines which minimise any potential negative impacts on the environment and community with audits to manage compliance with those policies.

We track all energy, water and waste on a monthly basis and set targets to reduce them. Plus we have moved towards carbon reduction as per agreements with the Science Based Targets initiative and our parent company, InterContinental Hotels Group.

Good ESG strategy begins with what’s core to your brand and your operation. Start by managing what’s within your control. Measuring energy, water and waste will inform your targets and allow you to measure success. The G for governance is extremely important to avoid greenwashing and driving high performance.

We have sustainable operations guidelines across Six Senses and audits to manage compliance
Sustainability has been a core focus of Six Senses since its inception / photo: Frederic Lagrange/six senses
Oriele Frank
Co-founder, chief product & sustainability officer, Elemis
Credit: Elemis

It’s our industry’s responsibility to have a more positive impact on people and planet. As part of Group L’Occitane, Elemis has signed up to many mandatory and voluntary ESG ratings and audits, including RE100, CDP climate, EcoVadis, B Corp and RSPO sustainable palm oil derivates. As a UK-registered business, we must also report on key sustainability metrics, such as our carbon emissions and our packaging impact.

In 2020, Elemis set up a sustainability roadmap to 2050. We started by measuring our existing position against markers such as carbon footprint, diversity, equity & inclusion (DE&I), traceability of ingredients and recyclability of packaging. We also reached out to stakeholders to understand what was important to them. Internally, we asked employees which of the UN’s Sustainability Goals they felt we should focus on and which charities they’d like to support.

It can be daunting but just take it step by step. First, use government websites to find out if your business has any legal ESG reporting requirements in your country. Legalities aside, use a recognised framework, such as the B Impact Assessment tool, to assess your current position.

Once you’ve identified what’s most significant to your business and stakeholders, and understood your gaps, set up a short, medium and long-term sustainability plan. While some elements, such as carbon, waste and DE&I, are more measurable, there are other less measurable areas which are still worthwhile.

Remember to take your whole business on the journey. It’s important everyone knows and gets involved with your ambitions. And it’s also super important to collaborate and ask questions to other companies within and outside your industry who are on the same journey. B Corp businesses are perfect for this! We can achieve so much more working together.

It’s super important to collaborate with other companies on the same journey… we can achieve so much more working together
Fiona Rangel
Head of operations, Aromatherapy Associates
Credit: Aromathearpy Associates

We’ve been continuously improving our ESG approach for the last decade, however, when we achieved our B Corp certification in 2020 it was elevated to a priority.

When implementing a strategy, constantly ask yourselves how you can improve, as consistent small steps will take you a long way. Be conscious of the partners you work with, choosing those which focus on the environment and local communities. Be conscious of the products you produce and what impact the materials have on the environment.

At Aromatherapy Associates, we work with environmentally and socially ethical suppliers and manufacturers; for example, one of our essential oil suppliers puts money straight back into the indigenous community in Australia. We’re currently working to reduce all plastic within our packaging, although we’ve already come a long way we’re still looking for further reductions and utilising recycled plastic at increased levels.

Our distribution partners work with biodegradable or recyclable materials and our logistics partner in Europe has an ethical status on the environment, using renewable energy and electric vehicles and also works to financially support disadvantaged communities across the world.

Consistent small steps will take you a long way. Be conscious of the partners you work with … and the products you produce
Davide Bollati
Chair, Davines Group and Comfort Zone
Credit: Comfort Zone

We’ve been a B Corp company since 2016, but we’ve always had a deep commitment to the wellbeing of our people and the planet. Our purpose is to do our best for the world, creating a good life for all, through beauty, ethics and sustainability. We recognise our resources and planet are finite and feel every company has a responsibility to shift toward a sustainable and regenerative economy.

Three pillars guide our sustainability strategy: decarbonisation, circularity and biodiversity. In 2022, we signed a commitment with the Science Based Targets initiative to achieve net zero emissions no later than 2050, and this year we’ve incorporated water conservation into our efforts.

We prioritise eco-design principles in our packaging, allowing for reduced plastic usage and lighter materials. Thanks to our collaboration with Plastic Bank, we remove an equivalent amount of plastic from the environment for every plastic-packaged product we introduce to the market. If every company were to make such a choice, we would no longer have plastic pollution in the environment, or at the very least, the problem would be drastically reduced.

Also in 2021, we co-founded the European Regenerative Organic Center, one of the first establishments dedicated to training and research in regenerative organic agriculture. These actions are accompanied by a steadfast commitment to our local community, positively contributing to its development, as well as a strong focus on the wellbeing of our people – our most valuable asset.

A transition towards a new regenerative economic model, one that moves beyond the extractive take-make-dispose approach, is more necessary than ever. However, lasting and sustainable positive change can only occur when an ever-increasing number of public and private entities, as well as individual citizens, collaborate towards a common goal.

A transition towards a new regenerative economic model is more necessary than ever
Davines has a centre dedicated to researching regenerative organic agriculture / photo: Davines Group
FEATURED SUPPLIERS

Elevate your offering with the new MSpa Duet
As a globally recognised provider of luxury spa solutions, MSpa is dedicated to bringing high-end spa experiences into more spa and wellness businesses and homes. [more...]

Snow’s holistic cool-down: Embracing inclusivity in post-sauna rituals
In the world of wellness, the age-old tradition of sauna bathing is synonymous with relaxation, detoxification and rejuvenation. But, a crucial and sometimes overlooked part of the journey is the all-important cooldown. [more...]
+ More featured suppliers  
COMPANY PROFILES
Wynne Business Consulting and Education

Wynne Business, founded in 1998, specialises in creating, growing and fine- tuning spas, salons, wel [more...]
Blu Spas, Inc.

Blu is a full-service firm offering project feasibility, planning and design as well as operational [more...]
+ More profiles  
CATALOGUE GALLERY
 

+ More catalogues  

DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

17-17 Jul 2024

UK Spa Association - Summer networking event

Pennyhill Park , Bagshot, United Kingdom
28-29 Jul 2024

Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Conference 2024

Southern Sun Rosebank, Johannesburg, South Africa
+ More diary  
 
ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
LEISURE MEDIA MAGAZINES
LEISURE MEDIA HANDBOOKS
LEISURE MEDIA WEBSITES
LEISURE MEDIA PRODUCT SEARCH
 
SPA BUSINESS
SPA OPPORTUNITIES
SPA BUSINESS HANDBOOK
PRINT SUBSCRIPTIONS
FREE DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTIONS
ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media
Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2024
Uniting the world of spa & wellness
Get Spa Business and Spa Business insider digital magazines FREE
Sign up here ▸
News   Products   Magazine   Subscribe
Ask an expert
Environmental, social and governance

Companies without ESG credentials are getting left behind, as investors and consumers increasingly spend their money with environmentally conscious, ethical businesses. Kath Hudson takes a closer look at how spas can catch up


Environmental, social and governance (ESG) is important for all sectors, but it’s especially pertinent for spa stakeholders whose mission is to improve quality of life.

Following the pain of the pandemic, ESG could be seen as less of a priority, but it’s set to become increasingly important in terms of getting debt, investment and customers.

According to money experts, investors are now analysing non-financial factors to identify risk and growth opportunities. And ESG drives risk resilience. They recognise that companies that measure these metrics are ahead of the game in terms of any legislation and taxation which might be coming down the tracks and companies that can manage, predict and prepare for disruptions are positioned to thrive.

In addition, stakeholder capitalism – a philosophy based on the belief that companies have an obligation beyond providing returns to shareholders – is now gathering pace.

As well as making companies a less risky investment, ESG aligns with investors’ values, when they want to be seen as ethical. Pressure is also mounting from consumers who want to feel good about where they spend their money, as well as from governments.

The EU’s new carbon tax (see www.hcmmag.com/cbam) shows Europe is taking tough action on climate change.

Figures from Sustainable Wellness, formerly the Sustainable Spa Association (see opposite), suggest the spa industry is still behind the curve. So how can operators get started? We ask the experts.

Read more about how the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals apply to the spa and wellness sector: www.spabusiness.com/sdg

Lucy Brialey
Co-founder and director, Sustainable Wellness
PHOTO: Sustainable Wellness

ESG and CSR (corporate social responsibility) are increasingly essential and it’s a significant advantage for all businesses to implement strategies promptly, as a team effort throughout the entire organisation.

Sustainability should be viewed as a multifaceted endeavour requiring identification, monitoring, measurement, improvement and reporting. As consumers prioritise their environmental and social impact, spa businesses aligning with ESG principles can bolster their reputation, attract diverse clientele and also mitigate operational risks related to sustainability.

The level of ESG adoption in spa businesses varies. While our membership grew by 73 per cent in 2023, only 19 per cent show a commitment to structured sustainability measurement and education. Suppliers are notably more diligent, displaying enthusiasm rather than apprehension. Of our new members, 65 per cent are in the supply chain, 21 per cent are operators and 14 per cent are consultants, industry associations or academics.

Standalone, small to medium-sized hospitality chains and suppliers have been quicker and more successful in implementing ESG initiatives. Their key drivers are to meet market demand, improve team education and attract talent. International wellness and hospitality giants often focus on in-house reporting without third-party verification, lag in adopting social ESG practices and are driven by impending regulatory pressures. Nonetheless, the trend towards responsible business practices is growing industry-wide.

By its very nature, ESG creates diversity and inclusion across a business. All team members can contribute to a sustainable future, enhance brand image and advocate its values to attract environmentally and socially conscious customers. This, in turn, ensures long-term economic success in a changing business landscape.

Sustainable Wellness’ recommended steps towards ESG:
Environmental Responsibility

• Implement energy-efficient practices

• Reduce water consumption and waste

• Promote circular economy values

• Pay attention to responsible procurement

Social Responsibility

• Promote diversity and inclusion

• Provide sustainability and wellness training

• Support local communities

Governance

• Establish transparent corporate governance

• Ensure ethical business conduct

• Align team compensation with departmental or company-wide ESG goals

First steps:

• Collaborate with organisations offering ESG guidance

• Assess your current ESG performance

• Consider annual ESG reporting

• Set clear, measurable, time-bound ESG goals

• Engage stakeholders for insights and support

• Educate and train your staff

• Continuously improve your local and global environmental and social ESG initiatives

While our members grew by 73 per cent in 2023, only 19 per cent are committed to sustainability measurement and education
Consumers want to feel good about where they spend their money / photo: shutterstock/Pheelings media
Jeff Smith
VP of sustainability, Six Senses
Credit: Six Senses

We can’t be well while living in an unwell world, so any business not taking ESG into consideration is at risk of falling behind. Across Six Senses we operate with sustainable operations guidelines which minimise any potential negative impacts on the environment and community with audits to manage compliance with those policies.

We track all energy, water and waste on a monthly basis and set targets to reduce them. Plus we have moved towards carbon reduction as per agreements with the Science Based Targets initiative and our parent company, InterContinental Hotels Group.

Good ESG strategy begins with what’s core to your brand and your operation. Start by managing what’s within your control. Measuring energy, water and waste will inform your targets and allow you to measure success. The G for governance is extremely important to avoid greenwashing and driving high performance.

We have sustainable operations guidelines across Six Senses and audits to manage compliance
Sustainability has been a core focus of Six Senses since its inception / photo: Frederic Lagrange/six senses
Oriele Frank
Co-founder, chief product & sustainability officer, Elemis
Credit: Elemis

It’s our industry’s responsibility to have a more positive impact on people and planet. As part of Group L’Occitane, Elemis has signed up to many mandatory and voluntary ESG ratings and audits, including RE100, CDP climate, EcoVadis, B Corp and RSPO sustainable palm oil derivates. As a UK-registered business, we must also report on key sustainability metrics, such as our carbon emissions and our packaging impact.

In 2020, Elemis set up a sustainability roadmap to 2050. We started by measuring our existing position against markers such as carbon footprint, diversity, equity & inclusion (DE&I), traceability of ingredients and recyclability of packaging. We also reached out to stakeholders to understand what was important to them. Internally, we asked employees which of the UN’s Sustainability Goals they felt we should focus on and which charities they’d like to support.

It can be daunting but just take it step by step. First, use government websites to find out if your business has any legal ESG reporting requirements in your country. Legalities aside, use a recognised framework, such as the B Impact Assessment tool, to assess your current position.

Once you’ve identified what’s most significant to your business and stakeholders, and understood your gaps, set up a short, medium and long-term sustainability plan. While some elements, such as carbon, waste and DE&I, are more measurable, there are other less measurable areas which are still worthwhile.

Remember to take your whole business on the journey. It’s important everyone knows and gets involved with your ambitions. And it’s also super important to collaborate and ask questions to other companies within and outside your industry who are on the same journey. B Corp businesses are perfect for this! We can achieve so much more working together.

It’s super important to collaborate with other companies on the same journey… we can achieve so much more working together
Fiona Rangel
Head of operations, Aromatherapy Associates
Credit: Aromathearpy Associates

We’ve been continuously improving our ESG approach for the last decade, however, when we achieved our B Corp certification in 2020 it was elevated to a priority.

When implementing a strategy, constantly ask yourselves how you can improve, as consistent small steps will take you a long way. Be conscious of the partners you work with, choosing those which focus on the environment and local communities. Be conscious of the products you produce and what impact the materials have on the environment.

At Aromatherapy Associates, we work with environmentally and socially ethical suppliers and manufacturers; for example, one of our essential oil suppliers puts money straight back into the indigenous community in Australia. We’re currently working to reduce all plastic within our packaging, although we’ve already come a long way we’re still looking for further reductions and utilising recycled plastic at increased levels.

Our distribution partners work with biodegradable or recyclable materials and our logistics partner in Europe has an ethical status on the environment, using renewable energy and electric vehicles and also works to financially support disadvantaged communities across the world.

Consistent small steps will take you a long way. Be conscious of the partners you work with … and the products you produce
Davide Bollati
Chair, Davines Group and Comfort Zone
Credit: Comfort Zone

We’ve been a B Corp company since 2016, but we’ve always had a deep commitment to the wellbeing of our people and the planet. Our purpose is to do our best for the world, creating a good life for all, through beauty, ethics and sustainability. We recognise our resources and planet are finite and feel every company has a responsibility to shift toward a sustainable and regenerative economy.

Three pillars guide our sustainability strategy: decarbonisation, circularity and biodiversity. In 2022, we signed a commitment with the Science Based Targets initiative to achieve net zero emissions no later than 2050, and this year we’ve incorporated water conservation into our efforts.

We prioritise eco-design principles in our packaging, allowing for reduced plastic usage and lighter materials. Thanks to our collaboration with Plastic Bank, we remove an equivalent amount of plastic from the environment for every plastic-packaged product we introduce to the market. If every company were to make such a choice, we would no longer have plastic pollution in the environment, or at the very least, the problem would be drastically reduced.

Also in 2021, we co-founded the European Regenerative Organic Center, one of the first establishments dedicated to training and research in regenerative organic agriculture. These actions are accompanied by a steadfast commitment to our local community, positively contributing to its development, as well as a strong focus on the wellbeing of our people – our most valuable asset.

A transition towards a new regenerative economic model, one that moves beyond the extractive take-make-dispose approach, is more necessary than ever. However, lasting and sustainable positive change can only occur when an ever-increasing number of public and private entities, as well as individual citizens, collaborate towards a common goal.

A transition towards a new regenerative economic model is more necessary than ever
Davines has a centre dedicated to researching regenerative organic agriculture / photo: Davines Group
LATEST NEWS
Rugby legend Jonny Wilkinson joins the speaker lineup at the HCM Summit to share insights into his journey to health and wellbeing
Rugby legend, Jonny Wilkinson has been announced as a keynote speakers for the HCM Summit on 24 October in London.
Woodland Spa to double footprint with £16m revamp, set to complete in August
The Woodland Spa, a premier UK day spa located in Burnley, Lancashire, is set to unveil the results of its £16 million (US$20.5 million, €18.9 million) transformation this August.
Therme creating ‘natural-healing urban oasis’ in South Korea, eyes further locations in Asia and US
Global wellbeing organisation Therme Group is on a mission to make wellness accessible to all and is expanding globally, bringing its social spas to the US, Canada, the UK and now South Korea.
Prime IV Hydration & Wellness unveils Nashville location amid plans for 97 new franchise spas this year
Nutrient vitamin IV therapy franchise, Prime IV Hydration & Wellness, is accelerating its expansion across the US, having recently launched its third location in Nashville's Green Hills area.
Third Space is on a roll with the second of three 2024 club launches
Third Space is celebrating the launch of its 11th club in London at the historic Battersea Power Station development.
SwellSpa taps AI to deliver nature-based sound therapy for spa treatment rooms
Sound wellness company Swell has launched AI-generated music solutions for spas and hotels, scientifically proven to improve wellbeing.
Elaine Jobson, CEO of Jetts, publishes high performance management book
Happy staff make more profitable businesses is the message of Jetts CEO, Elaine Jobson’s new book High Performance through Happy People.
Restorative wellness retreat opens at Grand Hotel Son Net in foothills of Mallorca’s Tramuntana mountain region
Grand Hotel Son Net – a stylish, art-filled Mallorcan boutique hotel – has launched a brand-new spa and wellness area, after reopening in 2023.
GWI publishes Wellness Policy Toolkit to help address global mental health crisis
The Global Wellness Institute (GWI) has released a new report emphasising the critical role of mental wellness in supporting overall mental health.
Submersive's psychedelic bathhouse concept fusing wellness, art and tech to arrive in 2026
In 2026, the traditional bathhouse experience will get a futuristic twist with the arrival of Submersive – an innovative concept combining classical spa therapies with art, AI technology and multimedia effects.
Fountain Life to operate Sbe's flagship 'six-star longevity centre' opening in LA later this year
Lifestyle hospitality company Sbe is branching into longevity and wellness with a new brand of properties – the first of which will open in LA’s Century Plaza development by the end of 2024.
Walking 10,000 steps daily confirmed to reduce health risks of inactivity, say Australian scientists
A new study by the University of Sydney is one of the first to objectively measure whether daily steps can offset the health risks of sedentary behaviour.
+ More news   
 
FEATURED SUPPLIERS

Elevate your offering with the new MSpa Duet
As a globally recognised provider of luxury spa solutions, MSpa is dedicated to bringing high-end spa experiences into more spa and wellness businesses and homes. [more...]

Snow’s holistic cool-down: Embracing inclusivity in post-sauna rituals
In the world of wellness, the age-old tradition of sauna bathing is synonymous with relaxation, detoxification and rejuvenation. But, a crucial and sometimes overlooked part of the journey is the all-important cooldown. [more...]
+ More featured suppliers  
COMPANY PROFILES
Wynne Business Consulting and Education

Wynne Business, founded in 1998, specialises in creating, growing and fine- tuning spas, salons, wel [more...]
+ More profiles  
CATALOGUE GALLERY
+ More catalogues  

DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

17-17 Jul 2024

UK Spa Association - Summer networking event

Pennyhill Park , Bagshot, United Kingdom
28-29 Jul 2024

Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Conference 2024

Southern Sun Rosebank, Johannesburg, South Africa
+ More diary  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media
Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2024

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
LEISURE MEDIA MAGAZINES
LEISURE MEDIA HANDBOOKS
LEISURE MEDIA WEBSITES
LEISURE MEDIA PRODUCT SEARCH
PRINT SUBSCRIPTIONS
FREE DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTIONS