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Saturday, 19 October

Into Africa

Planet First Ltd, the creator and custodian of The Planet Mark, has signed a licensing agreement with Sunbird Group, the construction and support services company with operations across East and Southern Africa.

The deal marks the launch of The Planet Mark into Africa and is the first major step towards growing the internationally recognised and trusted sustainability certification globally.

Under the deal, The Planet Mark will be integrated and be rolled out as part of Sunbird Group’s support services that it provides to multinationals and local businesses across Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Mozambique, South Africa and Zambia. The deal is underscored by a commitment by the Sunbird Group to improve its own sustainability performance year-on-year having become Planet Mark-certified itself.

“Sustainability is key to the Sunbird Group, it is ingrained into how we operate,” said Jo Senders, Support ervices Managing Director of Sunbird Group. “Making the commitment to be Planet Mark-certified, and through our license to deliver and integrate The Planet Mark sustainability programme into our service lines, the combined carbon mitigation and reduction achieved by the Sunbird Group and its certified clients creates a tangible sustainable effect on the environment and workplace.”

Steve Malkin, CEO of Planet First and founder of The Planet Mark, added: “Our ambition has always been to grow The Planet Mark brand internationally and to see it embedded into the products and services our customers supply to their customers. So we are delighted to have signed this ground-breaking deal with Sunbird Group, a company that shares our mission and values, and is providing a first-class service in one of the fastest developing continents and economies on the planet and where climate change poses some of the biggest threats to society and the environment.”

Headquartered in Nairobi with a corporate base in London, Sunbird Group was established three years ago

and now employs 500 people. Replicating the model of UK-based support service companies, such as Capita and Carillion, it provides everything from serviced office space for blue chip multinationals, to facilities management, in the commercial, health and natural resources sectors.

The Planet Mark Certification Programme will sit within Sunbird Group’s support services division, which is made up of three integrated businesses: Facilities Management, Workplace Solutions and Sustainable Environments.

The Planet Mark sustainability certification programme is a complete package, combining robust measurement, employee engagement and communications. Planet Mark-certified businesses have a minimum requirement to reduce their carbon emissions by 2.5% per year. Since it launched in 2013, The Planet Mark has certified over 100 organisations and delivered an average carbon emissions reduction of 14.5% per employee for its clients.

A training programme is now underway to support Sunbird in delivering The Planet Mark to its clients.

The Planet Mark is an internationally recognised and trusted sustainability certification programme recognising commitment to continuous improvement in sustainability. It is awarded to businesses, properties, new developments and projects that are committed to reducing their carbon emissions. Its unique 3-step programme develops knowledge and communication skills so as to embed sustainability within organisations

Article written by Cathryn Ellis

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