Press Release

thinkstep and SGS join forces to deliver IFC’s EDGE green building program to developing countries

Date:
24/09/2015

Leinfelden-Echterdingen, Boston, Geneva, 22.9.2015 - thinkstep and SGS today announced a partnership to bring IFC’s green building standard, EDGE, to nearly 100 developing countries.

As an IFC global partner, thinkstep and SGS will work closely with IFC to generate wide-spread recognition of EDGE, satisfy demand through excellence in delivery and bring environmental building certification to the mass market.

Urbanisation in emerging markets presents a narrow window of opportunity to stimulate market transformation of the building sector. Resource-efficient or green buildings are a crucial element of our strategy to alleviate the impact of rapid development on climate change. Green buildings also significantly benefit building owners and occupiers, particularly in housing where utility bills can be a significant share of a homeowner’s income in developing countries.

As IFC’s green building label for new residential and commercial buildings, EDGE is not just another certification standard, but is also a green building design tool, free for anyone to use. EDGE’s unique approach enables design teams and project owners to identify the most cost-effective green building solutions for their projects that leads to an efficient and robust audit certification process. This allows design teams to optimise their buildings’ designs before seeking independent audit and certification of their assessments. To reach the EDGE standard, a building must achieve at least a 20 percent reduction in energy and water use, and a 20 percent reduction in the energy used to make the construction materials.

The thinkstep-SGS partnership brings a unique blend of extensive knowledge in development and administration of green building standards, with world-renowned services in inspection, verification, testing and certification. Together, thinkstep and SGS will stimulate wide spread demand, build trust and confidence in the EDGE brand and deploy teams of independent auditors that will help ensure that financiers, investors and owners pursue EDGE certification.

“Never before have developers been able to verify and certify their green design with such speed and affordability, which is needed for market transformation,” said Prashant Kapoor, principal green building specialist for IFC and the inventor of EDGE. “The establishment of a new global certification entity through the combined forces of thinkstep and SGS will result in a strong foothold across the world, as they will bring their prestige, knowledge and vast network to catalyse the market with EDGE.”

We are pleased to be able to help drive adoption for this game-changing global certification system to encourage more than 2 billion square meters of floor space built each year, to be built green,” said Thomas Saunders, EDGE program manager for thinkstep. “Our partnership with SGS will give us the broadest possible global reach while ensuring separation of the auditing and certifying functions and guaranteeing quality of the projects overall.”

“EDGE is a first-of-its-kind approach to persuade the industry to change course and build green,” said Nicolas Kyndt, global vice president, SGS Environmental Services. “Our strategy is to achieve success by generating wide-spread recognition, satisfying demand through excellence in delivery, and ensuring a ripple effect of green construction.”

IFC also announced global partner Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI). GBCI and SGS currently serve as local certification providers for EDGE in India and Vietnam respectively, which has helped them prepare for global readiness.

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our capital, expertise and influence to create opportunity where it’s needed most. In FY15, our long-term investments in developing countries rose to nearly $18 billion, helping the private sector play an essential role in the global effort to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.

About SGS

As the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company, SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 80,000 employees, SGS operates a network of more than 1,650 offices and laboratories around the world. SGS’ reputation for independence, excellence and innovation has established the company as the market leader in providing services that improve efficiency, reduce risk and deliver competitive advantage for customers. For more information, visit www.sgs.com.

About thinkstep

thinkstep enables organizations worldwide to succeed sustainably. Our industry-leading software, data and consulting services built on our integrated enterprise software platform thinkstep.one help businesses drive operational excellence, product innovation, brand value and regulatory compliance. With a global presence in 19 countries we serve more than 2,000 companies, including 40 percent of the Fortune 500, such as BASF, Hewlett-Packard, Interface, Renault, Siemens and Unilever.