How can saas technology save rainforests? With Netguru

Joe Ronan

Joe Ronan

Disruption talks powered by netguru part 3

The final installment of “How can online store technology save rainforests? Netguru” offers us insight into SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) technology and how it’s changing the game in modern tech. 

SaaS is a method of software delivery that allows data to be accessed purely online. The cloud-based model is becoming more and more common with more than 60% of software seekers only wanting web-based products.

SaaS technology removes the need for physical hardware and focuses more rigidly on fully functional online platforms such as Gmail for email. Ric gives us a thorough explanation of One Tribe Global’s SaaS technology, and how he and his team are utilizing it to combat climate change.

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Enough about trees, more on the industry

Filip: Now more onto the industry space and the business. Since you are in the industry, you are someone I definitely consider an expert.

So, market readiness of other companies to follow One Tribe’s path. Are other players going into this direction?

On the flip side – Why would anyone not engage with such an initiative such as One Tribe regardless of who you are?

It’s such a no-brainer!

Ric: I would say climate tech being biased. It’s the hottest space in tech right now. In some senses it’s like the dot-com boom all over again because it’s brand new – it never existed.

This whole sector of tech has never existed until the last few years. In the last 24 months or so we’ve started to see this climate action as a service.

This is the beauty of this industry. In other businesses, we would see competitors and we’d be stressed thinking this idea is no good. But for us every time we see a new company doing something similar it’s validation. It’s like we’re not crazy, we’re in the right space and this is the right time you know?

The more companies that spin up like this, even the same as One Tribe we know the end result is going to be:

“We’re going to fight climate change.”

So the beauty of this industry is its collaborations. In previous industries; nightlife, music, entertainment, it’s competitive. It’s ugly. This is collaboration at its best and the end result is that we protect the planet for everybody. 

It’s an amazing time right now to be involved in this because we really are at an early adopter stage. In terms of only ESG investors, you know that ESG scene. That it’s general funds going “what are we going to do we need to be green!”

“Let’s create an ESG fund”. Then you dig into it and it’s still the same fund with an ESG badge on the front of it. Because they’ve not worked it out yet.

But they will work it out

There’s some smart money coming into this space and because of that people are raising investment, they’re able to go out and start a whole new industry.

A whole new area called climate action.

SaaS technology is the way forward

SaaS technology is the way forward

We are, from what I’ve seen, one of the first climate action platforms that are a dedicated B2B SaaS technology provider. What we have seen is a lot of other services coming in.

For example subscription services, offset your carbon footprint initiatives, pay five pounds a month, it’s the price of a cup of coffee… and you can offset your carbon footprint for that year from those.

Climate-neutral services are another example. Having your business’s carbon footprint calculated then offering an offset which is a carbon credit purchase to offset the difference.

There are so many sustainability agencies who would have worked on large contracts with a small number of clients and now, are converting into the SaaS model.

They’re realizing is that there is vast, global, infinite scalability, and what they’re actually doing is dropping the agency model and moving to SaaS.

This whole industry is really starting to create its own sector 

There is this one organization which is absolutely incredible called Ecologi. They’ve gone off like a rocket ship and have an amazing product but it’s about the person. You join. You grow your own forest.

They will then plant trees every month for your subscription level which I believe starts as low as £4. So there’s a ton of services exactly like that. This whole industry is really starting to create its own sector.

Filip: So it’s sort of needless to say that sustainability is on the rise. We’ve spoken about the importance of it on the customer-facing front so even though it’s a no-brainer.

Everybody will agree that if you don’t embrace sustainability, sustained failure is what you’ll get if you fail to jump on the wave.

the tribe is growing one tribe global sustainable business

And Congratulations on becoming B Corp certified. Welcome to the family! 

Filip: I spoke at the beginning about JLR (Jaguar Land Rover) and their commitment to 2025 being the year when they stopped producing any engine cars and switch to electric-only models.             

Do you think that’s a very quick timeline – 4 years from now?

Ric: I think they’re a small brand so they can move fast. I’d like to see Ford do that.

Filip: You know that’s exactly the conversation that I wanted to spark. What is a holistic timeline? 2025 that’s barely believable and it’s a big commitment from a big brand.

But let’s not speak only about automotive. When do you think we will see this massive generational shift where, just like today, we look at things 50 years ago and say wow we were that careless? 

We may get an overkill of everybody talking about saving trees

Ric:  I think we’re already there. It’s one of those things where all of a sudden it will just appear everywhere and we may get an overkill of everybody talking about saving trees.

But I think that the easy touch businesses, software businesses, tech businesses as a whole can make that transition overnight. 

For example, a tech business, if they change their energy supply in their office to green energy supply or if everyone works remotely, they are such simple adjustments in my eyes. 

Not everybody can do that.  I think what we’ll find is the larger organizations traditionally are slow-moving mountains so they will take a long time but they’re going to lose so much market share to the challenge of new brands. 

The Covid-19 pandemic has the same detrimental effects as climate change

Look at what Covid has done to the high street. In several months high streets shut down, major brands have gone and now Boohoo group and other e-commerce businesses are buying the likes of Debenhams. As if an e-commerce brand that only started appearing about four years ago and made its move two years ago just bought out Debenhams. It’s insane. 

Now, Covid is a major major turning point globally. The great reset they call it. If we look at Covid it’s like a ripple in the ocean and climate action is the great tsunami that’s coming. So if we think about what Covid has done to change business so fast overnight within a year’s period it vastly changed our entire high street, our entire way of life. 

What’s coming with climate change now is only ramping up. The IPCC report came out in 2018 it’s about keeping down to 1.5 degrees centigrade in the next decade. That’s 2030.

That’s around the corner.

That’s not even enough time to take our time.

It’s instant action today. 

IPCC-climate-change-report-World Resources Institute
I think big businesses have got a 2050 target

Big businesses are aware of that. That pressure is going to hammer them. Every year we creep up to 2030, the intensity of that deadline increases. Challenger brands are going to take their market share, doubling every year, if not tripling every year.

So I think big businesses have got a 2050 target which with the added pressure will have to drop to 2040. Otherwise, they won’t even exist in 2050. They won’t exist because those challenger brands will clean them out within 10 years.

I think the reality is all these companies and all these big organizations are that they’re setting that target. The Paris Agreement was put in place, everyone’s trying to abide by that.

The sustainability goals have been laid out and it’s very simple

We know what we need to do. We’ve got the tools and the time so we can make it happen. Those companies’ annual reports dropping is causing them to panic. So we will see them shift their targets from 2050 to 2040 to 2030.

It’s a very broad scope conversation but summarizing I think challenger bands are going to kill these businesses within 5 to 10 years in every single industry if they don’t move faster

And those 20 to 50 targets are gonna have to drop 20 years to catch up and that’s my mini prediction.

go green mindset the light bulb idea
Green energy suppliers can help you begin your sustainability journey 

Filip: It’s a great one. I’m actually getting a lot of back-channel comments that this episode is extremely quotable. Our sustainability leads Karolina is saying that switching to a green energy supplier in Poland is a challenging thing.

Ric: Fantastic, you should check Tesla power. Tesla offers energy units called power walls especially for companies and organizations on the commercial side. You don’t need as much floor space to put solar cells in so on the top of an office block .

For example, if you have a roof space you can easily solar panel using something like the Tesla power wall and completely turn your office into 100% renewable energy.

Yes, it’s expensive but you know it’s not as expensive as what climate change is costing us. It’s worth it.

Filip: Yes it’s always the matter of the initial cost – over time the costs subsides and subsides and subsides.

It’s a good remark that you’re making because we’re having an ongoing conversation about the future of our office like most businesses that have offices so thank you.

This is it for today that was a very great remark from you with the challenger brands eliminating the ones who simply failed to get in with the times.

Ric: No problem that’s absolutely fine and thank you. Thank you very much!

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