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Sustainability is more important than ever. We are currently living through a time of unprecedented risks and adverse developments that are severely testing our social and economic systems, of which the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is only one example. The World Economic Forum’s risk report from 2020 made it clear that the top five risks in relation to likelihood were all environmental, whereas the top five risks related to impact were all social and environmental in nature, entailing that climate change, biodiversity loss, mental health, and social inequality are as high-impact risks as they’ve ever been.

Acting on sustainability by formulating innovative public policies and investing in new technologies, business and future-fit ventures are therefore necessary components for ensuring long-term value and resiliency.

At the same time, the sustainability crisis offers new market opportunities, an area where Danish companies are already strong and have the potential to grow further as global leaders.

Purpose of the report

For this reason, together with the Danish Business Authority, TechBBQ is exploring the state of sustainability in the Danish investment ecosystem.

Our goal is to create a better understanding of how impact and sustainability investing are changing.Our thesis is that sustainability is turning mainstream for investors, and that higher value is being placed on specific sustainability criteria that are closely linked to the process of creating social and environmental returns on investment.

Recognising and describing these tendencies provides us with deep insight into which developments investors care most about, how they approach the funding process, and which sustainability trends have the most influence on their decision making strategies. Understanding these phenomena help us to demystify the investment process for startups, leading to a better deal flow rate as startups would be better-equipped to pitch their ideas, as well as know which features they would need to implement in order to increase the chances of landing a successful investment.

Secondly, by providing a nuanced understanding of investors’ decision-making processes will also equip the regulatory landscape (such as public authorities) to create better guidance on how to support impact investing in the future.

Who can benefit from reading this report?

We envision that the report will be beneficial for stakeholders that are interested in sustainability, investments, and the startup ecosystem. This includes professionals such as founders, institutional investors, venture capitalists. The report is also valuable for professionals in the regulatory and policy landscape that are tasked with supporting business promotion and attracting international capital to Denmark.

Two people sitting by a desk at TechBBQ. The wall next to them has the logo of Vækstfonden and a text that says "We discover and develop the companies that Denmark cannot afford to miss out on."

Funding stages, risks and entrepreneurial experience


The State of Sustainability in the Danish Investment Ecosystem