Intesa Sanpaolo’s circular economy plafond bears fruit
An eco-friendly winter-growing tomato greenhouse is just one of the projects to benefit from Intesa Sanpaolo’s Circular Economy fund.
PODCAST: Why circular economy tomatoes taste sweeter
A peek inside a Slovenian tomato greenhouse demonstrates circular economy funding in action
Slovenian food producer Frisko’s new winter tomato greenhouse will produce delicious fruit all year round and add to the company’s output, while doing no harm to the planet. This circular project is just one that is backed by Intesa Sanpaolo’s Circular Economy plafond, a credit facility made available to green business initiatives.
Listen to the podcast to find out more about how Intesa’s Circular Economy plafond is already making systemic change happen.
In Slovenian tomato grower Frisko’s new greenhouse, a rainwater lagoon feeds the irrigation system that waters the plants.
Bumblebees fly around naturally pollinating, and there are no harsh weedkillers or pesticides to deter them.
The heating of the greenhouse co-generates electricity. What is more, the CO2 byproduct of the heating system is captured and, rather than being released into the atmosphere, it is pumped back into the greenhouse for the plants to convert into planet-friendly oxygen.
The greenhouse is an example of a circular economy design in action. It will produce delicious tomatoes all year round without doing any harm to the planet.
"This new greenhouse will increase our winter production by 50 per cent."
Kristijan Magdič, director at Paradajz d.o.o. (parent company of Friško d.o.o.) and procurator at FRIŠKO d.o.o.
High growth, low impact
The greenhouse project has been funded by a €3.5m loan from Intesa Sanpaolo’s Circular Economy plafond, a credit facility made available to green business initiatives.
Rather than focusing solely on crunching the financial details of a deal, when loaning from the plafond, Intesa Sanpaolo considers environmental KPIs such as renewable energy and carbon capture.
"In this case and many other cases, as bankers we need to get a little bit in depth into the business model and understand what we will bring, what will be the benefit for the entire planet from the project.
These are the little wins in our job.
Goranka Gregorič Repnik, Intesa Sanpaolo Slovenia’s Head of SME
Acceleration of systemic change
The circular economy is revolutionising all elements of industry but the food sector is unique in its challenges and opportunities.
"We believe this [Frisko] is a very important transaction, I would say a sort of landmark, to be followed by others.
We want to ensure our clients want to do business with us. But more importantly, we want to create value while creating positive impact, while innovating their way of doing business.
Massimiano Tellini, Head of Circular Economy at Intesa Sanpaolo’s Innovation Center
As the first financial services strategic partner of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Intesa Sanpaolo’s goal is to launch as many projects with environmental benefits as possible.
"Our clients are getting more and more educated in the importance of being sustainable.
All my colleagues in every single geography are committed and keen to do as many of these deals as possible.
Giuseppe Ferraro, Head of the Corporate and SME Department at Intesa Sanpaolo’s International Subsidiary Banks Division