When FairPrice first announced last year that they would begin to charge for plastic bags, I was half-expecting a massive outcry from family and friends. To my surprise, the responses that I got in return were mostly positive. “It’s been a long time coming!” exclaimed my best friend.
He had been bringing his reusable tote bag for his grocery runs even before the COVID-19 pandemic began.
For many, the minor inconveniences of adopting sustainable practices – be it drinking through a metal straw or refusing single-use plastics, are justified by the sizable environmental benefits of doing so. The sustainability craze has infected family and friends alike. And you know what? I am all for it!
While it is easy for individuals such as you and me to adopt sustainable practices, the case for SMEs, however, is not as clear cut.
An increasing number of SMEs understand the importance of incorporating sustainable practices to help drive business growth and remain compliant with sustainability standards. However, despite a strong commitment to going green, many SMEs still encounter difficulties in navigating this space. Some of the biggest challenges include inadequate knowledge and support to onboard sustainable solutions.
Hence, the question remains:
How do SMEs gain affordable access to sustainable solutions and sustainability training, and get connected to a sustainability ecosystem for support?
To solve this, we are building a self-sustaining ecosystem to help SMEs adopt green practices, technologies and financing to help meet sustainability goals, while simultaneously providing pre-approved solutions and training providers with an avenue to connect with and meet the needs of SMEs who are interested in adopting sustainable solutions and sustainability training.
Hence, due to popular demand on the back of a successful first run last year, The FinLab is now returning with a second run of the Sustainability Innovation Programme (SIP), a 4-week programme to help SMEs to transform their companies into sustainable businesses.
Till next time,
What’s New on The FinLab Online
The FinLab’s Sustainability Innovation Programme (SIP) is a 4-week programme to help SMEs to transform their companies into sustainable businesses. It provides deep insights across a variety of sustainability topics such as energy efficiency, decarbonisation, carbon reporting and electric vehicles. SMEs will be introduced to various greentech solutions that can kickstart their journey to a greener future.
Digital Spotlight is a series of thematic knowledge sharing workshops to help businesses transform and grow with the right digital tools and strategies. Through the 2-days workshop, businesses can gain insights on the trends, opportunities and challenges, learn how to leverage on technology to streamline operations, increase sales and customer base.
Digital Spotlight Series 2: E-Commerce and Digital Transactions
Date: 12th & 13th May 2022 | 10AM to 12PM
Jom Transform Programme: Womenpreneur Edition is curated to support entrepreneurs, specifically women, on their entrepreneurial and digitalisation journey within a like-minded community.
Jom Transform Programme: Womenpreneur Edition Kick-Off
Date: 14th June 2022 | 2.30PM to 4.30PM (SGT/MYT)
Join us at our virtual kick-off for the programme and hear what you will get to experience, and part-take in a panel discussion, “Women Entrepreneurs Making Leap Forward”, where you will be able to hear personal stories of fellow women leaders and their journey in combating gender stereotypes in workplace.
The FinLab is UOB’s innovation accelerator that brings the ecosystem together to catalyse business growth and transformation. With a regional presence in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand, The FinLab provides access to a range of business and technology experts, tools and content through The FinLab Online and in-person programmes. These programmes range from supporting the FinTech and start-up community in developing solutions, to assisting the Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SME) community in going digital and innovating for sustainability. Founded in 2015, The Finlab has supported and connected with more than 14,000 businesses globally.