h&b is launching what it says is the merchanting industry’s first Environmental, Sustainability and Corporate Governance (ESG) programme to help to put sustainability at the core of every h&b members’ business.

As well as legislative changes, the business case for a strong ESG strategy is now overwhelming – creating leaner, smarter businesses with less waste and more internal and external stakeholder engagement.

h&b’s ESG programme aims to help all h&b members, from larger multi-branch regional operations to smaller members, to design, create and operate a ESG strategy that suits their business model and creates value for staff, customers, and the business itself.

The aim of the h&b ESG programme is to take member companies beyond mere compliance and towards a common aim of sustainable growth and value creation.

In a business climate where stakeholders are showing increasing concern for environmental, social and governance  factors, now is the perfect time for h&b Group members to consider and implement their ESG strategy.

As well as satisfying stakeholders, the implementation of a strong ESG strategy provides value creation opportunity, in turn generating growth. The h&b programme has been developed to help members through this transformational journey, regardless of their size.

The first stage of the h&b programme will be a focus on test cases in a cross-section of the group’s members so that the findings can be implemented on a fully scalable programme across all of the group’s 100+ members nationwide. This will provide a template for every h&b member who will be supported in an implementation process with tools, data and expert support staff.

The programme offers h&b members a valuable business advantage, allowing even smaller independent merchants to compete sustainably with larger competitors.

h&b is a truly national merchant buying group with sales approaching £1 billion a year through its growing membership of independent builders’ merchants. 110 h&b merchant members with more than 285 branches are trading in partnership with around 280 suppliers. h&b offers its merchant members a real opportunity to improve profitability and grow market share by being part of the most progressive buying group in the UK.