Home Case Studies Ikano Group Preparing your organization to meet sustainability reporting requirements
Ikano Group, Ikano Insight and IBM
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Coordinating planning actions across the entire enterprise

As a multinational conglomerate with retail, banking, real estate, manufacturing, data analytics, reinsurance and insurance advisory businesses across multiple continents, sustainability was never an after-thought at Ikano Group. In fact, the Ikano Group has sustainability embedded into its DNA as a key driver for its business strategy. (It was originally a part of IKEA but has been independent since 1988.) Reflecting this commitment to sustainability, the group has an extensive set of environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals, with defined ambitions that will foster its progress and further enhance its efforts and outcomes in ESG-related areas.   

Ikano has already charted a plan with actionable goals to achieve its ESG targets and ambitions in line with the new EU Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) (link resides outside of ibm.com) and the European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) requirements. Thanks to this, the organization is on the right track to release its first CSRD-compliant report in 2026 (data from FY 2025). A lot of preparation work has gone into getting to this point, starting with a recognition of the scale of the challenge to streamline its processes around data gathering, data tracking, and reporting. The task was especially daunting because of the complexity of the organization. “Without a solid system, CSRD reporting would be more complicated and much less efficient, as well as resource and time-consuming,” says Iliane González Martín, CSRD Project Manager of the Ikano Group.

The Ikano Group consists of 6 diverse businesses spread across 3 continents, with complex characteristics that require a comprehensive approach to accommodate a wide range of operational variations, data sources and reporting considerations. Additionally, the company's commitment to transparency and granular reporting meant that it needed a solution that could provide detailed, audit-ready data on a wide range of ESG parameters, such as resource consumption, carbon emissions as well as other environmental, social and governance metrics. The stakes are high, because failure to comply with the CSRD reporting requirements could not only mean reputational damage, loss of customer trust and financial penalties, but also a deviation from Ikano’s core values and great sustainability efforts and commitments.

Aside from Ikano Group itself, all six subsidiaries—Ikano Bank, Ikano Bostad, Ikano Industry, Ikano Insight, Ikano Insurance and Ikano Retail—recognised the need for an ESG reporting and data management solution to support each subsidiary’s work towards individual sustainability targets.

83 active users on the Envizi-based solution 15,685 data types being captured and tracked for CSRD reporting Thousands of manhours to be saved from streamlining reporting data
I am very proud of the progress that Ikano Group and its six businesses have made in the CSRD journey, and I am excited to see the benefits that the Envizi platform will bring to our data collection, management and reporting. Iliane González Martín CSRD Project Manager Ikano Group
Identifying products, processes and expertise to move the project forward

Ikano found the answer to these needs right within their own group. One of their 6 entities, Ikano Insight, is an IBM Business Partner specializing in sustainability data management and analytics. Ikano Insight helps businesses capture, consolidate and analyze ESG data to meet reporting requirements and provide the insights they need to achieve their ESG goals. With a rich heritage in retail analytics, Ikano Insight is now focused on assisting complex organizations across all industries to automate sustainability reporting, improve compliance and achieve sustainability goals faster—in the most resource efficient way.

Ikano Insight delivers these outcomes through a combination of consulting, software and software implementation services.  When it comes to supporting their customers to meet CSRD reporting requirements, their software of choice is the IBM® Envizi™ ESG Suite. With the technology foundation determined, the Ikano Insight and IBM Consulting® teams worked together with the Ikano companies to establish an enduring ESG data strategy. They relied on the IBM Garage™ methodology to co-create goals and methods to monitor their progress in meeting their defined goals.

The teams established a data baseline, mapped ESRS requirements and defined hierarchies for both data gathering and reporting processes within Envizi. They also utilized Envizi’s automation feature to streamline data capture, allowing Ikano to integrate strategic ESG KPIs into operations and decision-making while focusing on driving impact. With the ESG data foundation in place and the data mapping complete, the Ikano Group and all six companies were prepared to make use of the Envizi ESG Suite’s reporting data governance and workflow tools, and align responses to the embedded ESRS framework to create the disclosures required by the CSRD regulation.

In order to meet the wide range of reporting and performance tracking requirements, the Ikano group of companies have taken advantage of the Envizi virtual accounts capability where each business is established as a virtual location with dedicated accounts for ESRS reporting. As the platform is rolled out for each business, they are set up as separate groups featuring their own customized hierarchies and location-specific accounts.

A solid governance structure is essential for the CSRD readiness process. Within Ikano Group, the CFO is accountable for the reporting process. The Group’s Sustainability Manager and the CSRD Project Manager collaborate to ensure that its business strategy is aligned with the CSRD requirements. Additionally, Ikano Group’s  CSRD Project Manager is responsible for coordinating the tasks and efforts of all Ikano businesses, providing support and facilitating the cohesion and consolidation of this information at Group level to secure CSRD compliance.

A Steering Committee at the Group level meets monthly to review project progress, discuss challenges, track advancements across the businesses and make necessary decisions. Regular updates are also shared and discussed across the C-suite and in management meetings at the Group level. Additionally, meetings are held regularly with all the business CSRD teams comprised of the CFO, CSRD project coordinator, and function managers from all departments (finance, sustainability, risk/legal, HR and operations). Both the CSRD project coordinator and the sustainability manager provide invaluable support to the CFO and the overall project. There are also regular meetings with each business to provide ongoing support and task follow-up, helping the companies’ and Group’s collective progress toward CSRD preparation.

Ikano’s preparation for CSRD is extensive and included the following key tasks:

  • Double-materiality assessment to identify the most significant topics to address, both for the group and for the individual entities under it, from impact materiality and finance materiality perspectives.
  • Impacts, risks and opportunities (IRO) assessment on the material topics and subtopics identified from the double-materiality assessment.
  • European sustainability reporting standards (ESRS) gap analysis to identify existing strengths and areas for improvement, to help facilitate compliance with the disclosure requirements of the CSRD, and to lay down a solid foundation for continued advancement in its sustainability journey.
  • Detailed roadmaps and action plans were created to address any gaps identified and to outline specific actions, responsibilities, timelines and priorities to ensure a concerted and comprehensive approach.
  • Climate transition plan design to take targeted steps to further progress in the decarbonization of the group and individual businesses and achieve organizational climate goals in alignment with the Paris Agreement (link resides outside of ibm.com).
  • Configuration and implementation of the Envizi platform strongly supported by Ikano Insight and IBM consulting to ensure a solid data collection and tracking, as well as a thorough reporting process.
  • Business strategy update to integrate sustainability into all aspects of the business, both at the group and business level, by incorporating strategic directions, actions, targets and metrics (KPIs) derived from the material topics and the identified IROs.
  • EU taxonomy focus on eligibility and alignment, further solidifying the group’s commitment to environmentally sustainable practices.
  • Creation of a comprehensive CSRD reporting toolkit to provide clear guidance and maintain consistency in reporting across Ikano group and individual businesses.
Discovering new ways to simplify complex processes across the enterprise to achieve sustainability goals

The biggest impact of the IBM Envizi platform implementation by Ikano Insight for all the businesses has been the simplification of complex data capture and reporting, allowing the individual companies to focus on taking crucial action.

One of the challenges that Ikano Insight recognized early on was that reporting for the CSRD was “brand new, nobody has done it before, and trying to do this manually would take thousands of hours, with no feasible way of pulling the data together to pass an audit,” says Peter Jones, Head of Sustainability, Ikano Insight. Iliane González Martín agrees, “Peter and I were working together, and we saw how huge it was. We could not have done the configuration and implementation of the Envizi platform without the project management and implementation services of Ikano Insight, with so many things to put in place across such a broad organization of diverse businesses.”

Currently, each Ikano business is finalizing its platform configuration. To improve seamless adoption, training sessions are being conducted for platform administrators and users to effectively engage the platform. The Group already has 83 active users on the platform, with 15,685 data types to date being fed into the platform across all businesses, with more to come. Reporting and disclosure processes have been streamlined, with automated data capture and data management, which will save thousands of hours over the next 12 months and beyond, assisting the Group on their journey to meet the demands of CSRD. With the ability to now trace data to source, change records, and provide direct auditor access, all businesses are truly becoming audit-ready.

With a consolidated view of data across the businesses that was not previously possible, aggregated KPIs are being established for all businesses. Ikano Group and all their businesses now have increased confidence in their underlying sustainability data foundation and accuracy of emissions calculations. The Envizi platforms provides a reliable accounting system for their performance metrics: energy, water, materials and recycling data are now as robust and accessible as financial data.

Ikano Group with Ikano Insight have made great strides in understanding how to approach the biggest challenge companies in the EU have looming over them: CSRD reporting. “Seeing the reporting requirements as an opportunity rather than a requirement is key—it is a mindset shift,” says Simon Taylor, Head of Marketing, Ikano Insight. “The Ikano group of companies don’t have a stand-alone sustainability strategy, but rather an integrated business strategy that includes sustainability. With this approach, the directions and goals for the company are an amalgamation of financial, environmental and sustainable governance as a totality. This approach really enables the survival of the business for the long term, and ensures long-term financial sustainability.”

Ikano Group's decision to distribute all ESG efforts and reporting across the entire organization in close collaboration with the board of directors, is yet another testament to the company's commitment to integrating sustainability into the core of its business operations—rather than waiting until reporting season. This cross-functional collaboration proved to be a crucial factor driving CSRD preparations forward, promoting efficiency and engagement across the group and their individual businesses.

Ikano Group has a long and steep road ahead in its ESG initiatives. But it has put in the hard work (and will continue to do so) for it to  spring into action. With Ikano Insight, IBM Consulting and IBM Envizi software in its corner, Ikano Group and its subsidiaries feel confident that they are well supported to navigate their reporting journey in the upcoming years.

About Ikano Group

Ikano Group (link resides outside of ibm.com) is an international group of companies with the parent company Ikano S.A. based in Luxembourg. Ikano Group is a privately held international group of companies active within the banking (Ikano Bank), real estate (Ikano Bostad), production (Ikano Industry), insurance (Ikano Re and Ikano Insurance Advisory), data analytics (Ikano Insight) and retail (Ikano Retail) sectors. Ikano Group was originally a part of IKEA, which was founded by Ingvar Kamprad, then became independent in 1988, and has since been owned by the Kamprad family.

The Ikano Group has approximately 9,000 employees working in 15 countries and 3 continents.

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About Ikano Insight

Ikano Insight (link resides outside of ibm.com) is a data and advanced analytics company under the Ikano Group, and it is a Silver Partner in the IBM Partner Plus program and its offering, the ESG Optimizer is powered by IBM Envizi technology. The company harnesses technology and advanced analytics to simplify the sustainability journey of businesses everywhere. 

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