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S&P Global acquires Shades of Green business from CICERO

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S&P Global acquires Shades of Green business from CICERO

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  • Brings complementary capabilities within S&P Global Ratings related to the provision of second party opinions

S&P Global, provider of credit ratings, benchmarks and analytics, has announced the acquisition of the Shades of Green business from the Center for International Climate Research (CICERO), Norway’s foremost institute for interdisciplinary climate research.

The acquisition will be integrated into S&P Global Ratings and further expand the breadth and depth of its second party opinions (SPOs) offering. SPOs are independent assessments of a company’s financing or framework’s alignment with market standards and typically provided before any borrowing is raised. 

The global ESG debt universe has grown rapidly to reach $4.5 trillion now compared to $1.5 trillion two years ago according to the International Institute of Finance. Shades of Green provides independent, research-based SPOs of green, sustainability and sustainability-linked financing frameworks and climate risk assessments and impact reporting reviews grounded in climate science. Since providing the SPO for the first green bond framework issued by the World Bank in 2008, it has been a leading provider of SPOs, since being established as a subsidiary to CICERO in 2018. The firm has won multiple industry awards for the quality of its analysis and its Shades of Green methodology is highly respected in providing deeper transparency on climate risk.

See related article: Mona Naqvi of S&P Global with Rachel Hodgdon of IWBI- Putting “H” Health & Humanity into ESG

“At S&P Global Ratings, we’re committed to providing the data, analysis and opinions that investors need to make decisions with conviction. In the same way we strive to provide transparency on credit quality with our credit ratings, we’ve been building the capabilities and expertise to support the development of the sustainable debt market,” said Martina Cheung, President of S&P Global Ratings. “Shades of Green’s unrivalled climate expertise and track record will help us further expand and strengthen our ability to help our customers seeking access to the sustainable debt markets.”

“With S&P Global Ratings, we have found a partner with the same commitment to transparency and the means to support a more sustainable financial system,” added Kristin Halvorsen, Director, Center for International Climate Research (CICERO). 

“The Shades of Green methodology provides transparency on climate risk while motivating early-movers in the market and rewarding advanced actors.” Christa Clapp, Co-founder, CICERO Shades of Green.

S&P Global Ratings will retain an office in Oslo, Norway where Shades of Green is based. The Center for International Climate Research will continue to lend its climate expertise to Shades of Green and provide insights to S&P Global’s other leading sustainability businesses. 

Since launching in 2017, S&P Global Ratings’ SPOs have been underpinned by a robust and published analytical approach and produced by a team of sustainable finance analysts relying on the sector level expertise provided by the credit analysts.

The transaction was signed and closed on 1 December 2022 and terms were not disclosed.

Source: S&P Global

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