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The Future of Sustainable Business Events in a Global Economy

More business events are going green every day. How will sustainability change the face of event marketing?

Sustainable business events are changing the future of the corporate world. A growing number of companies are starting to hold these events to discuss strategies to migrate to a more environmentally sound business strategy.

How Sustainable Business Events Are Shaping the Global Business Community

A lot of sustainable business events have been hosted in the United States in recent years. However, these events are becoming even more popular in other parts of the world. More than 500 representatives of companies, trade unions and public entities attended the forum “Green Growth in Action: Networks of Sustainable Enterprises”, held last March 29 at the Universidad de los Andes. The event culminated with the signing of an agreement to promote the productive transformation of SMEs throughout the country.

Many people originally feared that the focus on sustainability wouldn’t last, because companies would worry about losing money. But this is not proving to be the case. Investing in sustainability is both profitable and ethically sound. The U.S. market for sustainable products is expected to reach $150 billion within the next two years. The market is also growing rapidly in Europe. We talked to some colleagues in Spain, who shared some interesting observations. A number of them are starting to practice sustainable business events to share strategies and reach customers concerned about sustainability.

In Spain, the results achieved in promoting productive transformation and green growth through the change model Sustainable Business Network-RedES, developed in Uniandes, are overwhelming. To date, the benefits to Spanish companies amount to $17.8 billion pesos.

The RedES model has been applied by the Corporación Autónoma Regional de Cundinamarca-CAR with the Universidad de los Andes since 2013. More than 250 companies in the CAR jurisdiction have generated productive transformation within their organizations and value chains.

Outstanding figures contributed visions on green growth in two tables: the first one, integrated by Hernando José Gómez, director of the Green Growth Mission (MCV) of the National Planning Department (DNP), Jorge Arcieri, Head of Development of Products and Services of Bancóldex, Carlos Herrera, Vice-president of Sustainable Development of the National Association of Industriales-Andi, in charge of Martha Carrillo, Director of Environmental Culture and Citizen Service of the CAR.

The second panel presented the experiences of large companies and SMEs that have participated in RedES-CAR and put green growth in action, demonstrating significant economic and environmental benefits. executives from Colanta, Asequímicos, Corona, Coca-Cola and Aislapor participated.

The companies related how the model generates change by empowering people and generating capabilities, organizational change through the design and implementation of economic and environmental improvement projects, and change in the chain by bringing the client company closer to its SME suppliers or between the guild and associates.

Bancóldex is a key ally in scaling up the RedES model throughout the country, due to its national scope and the possibility of offering support to companies to finance their sustainable development and environmental improvement projects.

The director of CAR, Néstor Franco, highlighted that collaborative alliances between the public sector, companies and academia, such as CAR’s with Uniandes, generate confidence when executing the RedES model and implementing changes in people, organizations and chains.

The guest speaker at the event was Manuel Rodríguez Becerra, emeritus professor at the Universidad de los Andes, the country’s prime minister of environment and founder of the National Environmental Forum, who traced the origin of the RedES model and its application to more than 7,000 companies in Mexico before bringing it to Colombia. He highlighted the challenges and opportunities of green growth and pointed out the need to maintain continuity in public policies, so as to ensure greater competitiveness of Colombian companies in the global market.

The execution of the new RedES-Bancóldex program will be carried out through agreements between Bancóldex and the territorial entities, which will support those companies and guilds most interested in strengthening their competitiveness and carrying out the productive transformation.

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