Chief financial officers at companies including

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA,

Ford Motor Co.

and

Verizon Communications Inc.

are calling on other executives to make sure their businesses help fight poverty and climate change.

A group of CFOs on Monday published a framework to help guide companies’ decision-making in areas such as corporate finance and investing to support the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. These goals, adopted in 2015, include ending poverty by 2030, taking action against climate change and improving access to clean water.

The CFOs are urging other finance executives to allocate their companies’ resources to projects that support the development goals and expand their set of funding instruments to include green bonds and other sustainability-oriented tools, executives said.

“Because of the seats we sit in within our companies, us being seen as supporting it…makes people take a second look and say, ‘Hey, maybe there are things we can do,’” Verizon CFO Matthew Ellis said.

The telecommunications company last week issued a $1 billion green bond and said it would use the proceeds to support four of the U.N.’s 17 goals in areas such as clean energy and economic growth. Verizon plans to invest in solar and wind facilities to power its networks.

Investors increasingly take interest in environmental, social and governance issues. Funds that pursued sustainability targets in their investment strategy during the first half of 2020 attracted $20.9 billion in net new assets from investors. That is roughly on par with the whole of 2019 and about four times as much as in 2018, according to

Morningstar Inc.,

a ratings company. Morningstar analyzed 334 U.S. funds in its tally.

Fernando Tennenbaum, chief financial officer of AB InBev.



Photo:

O’Brien and a friend, Paul Paglia, spent weeks presenting some pretty sound logic to Audi: He no longer needed the prepaid maintenance because the car he bought in January had been destroyed and sold for junk.

“It was to cover the first two appointments for maintenance, which were never used,” Paglia said. “The car had never been at the dealer for service before it was totaled.”

O’Brien had purchased the bright blue 2015 Audi A3, with 55,800 miles on it, at Audi Natick. The car, which O’Brien said he loved, had cost about $17,000. The sales staff separately sold him an Audi service plan, known as Audi Care, which is created and controlled by AudiUSA, the national corporation (not the dealership).

I’m not sure why anyone would pay upfront for future maintenance. I think it’s always advisable to hold your money until you absolutely must part with it. You don’t know what may occur between the time you pay for something and when you expect to receive it — like getting into an accident that totals your car.

And asking for the return of your money is never a good position to be in.

On its website, AudiUSA says its service plan saves money, based on a comparison of its prices and those of local dealerships, although “actual savings will vary.” It also touts the program as a hedge against inflation (though inflation is at a historically low 1.3 percent).

To me, AudiUSA’s pitch doesn’t make a convincing case for paying $799 in advance, just to wheel your Audi into the service department for oil changes, tune-ups, and inspections without (further) opening your wallet.

But to O’Brien, excited about the beautiful vehicle he was about to drive off the lot, the Audi service plan “seemed like a genuine, reasonable offer,”

WBA world super-middleweight champion Callum Smith has said he hopes to fight before the end of 2020, even if it is not the mega money fight he wants.

Smith (27-0, 19 KOs), 30, from Liverpool, England, is still waiting on news of when he will fight again after last boxing in November and has been linked to a fight with Mexican Saul “Canelo” Alvarez.

2 Related

But Smith — ranked No. 1 in the 168 pounds division by ESPN — would just be happy to have any opponent by the end of 2020.

“There is no news at the minute, I’m in regular contact with [promoter] Eddie Hearn and we’re trying to get something sorted for the end of the year,” Smith told ESPN.

“We thought we would have crowds back by now which is why we have waited this long without fighting. All the fighters that were waiting for crowds to return will have to just get on with it now, we can’t afford to wait anymore because we might have to wait ages for crowds.

“It’s been frustrating but it’s not just me that’s been affected, all boxers have and people from different walks of life, so you can’t think you are the victim.”

Boxing without crowds means reduced wages, and reports suggest crowds at sports events in the UK might not happen until April.

“It will be less money and that’s why some fighters were holding out and hoping to get some money with crowds,” Smith said.

As health workers carried out coronavirus tests in public squares in Washington, DC, in July, work had to be suspended as temperatures in the paved spaces soared to what felt like 110 degrees Fahrenheit (43C).

The heat-wilted city of Phoenix in the US state of Arizona, meanwhile, has already seen planes delayed from taking off when airport temperatures hit 120F (48C). And soaring thermometers in Los Angeles this summer led tens of thousands to lose power for days.

In Greece, rising heat is now “one of our city’s greatest challenges”, Athens Mayor Kostas Bakoyannis told an online event in August.

Longer and hotter heatwaves driven by climate change are becoming an increasingly dangerous – and costly – menace, with sweltering cities often picking up the tab for everything from repairing melted roads to running more cooling centres.

But a new way to cut the financial risks is emerging: heatwave insurance.

Since the 1990s, utility companies in cities like Chicago have used weather derivatives – an early form of heat insurance – to hedge the cost of buying additional power on hot days when electricity demand outstrips supply, said Daniel Osgood of the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI).

Heat has also been an indirect part of “index-based” insurance for poor farmers, which provides automatic payouts for assumed crop losses if, for instance, enough days pass without rain, said Osgood, who has worked on developing such policies.

But a wider range of heat insurance offerings – likely aimed initially at city authorities or similar government buyers around the world – are now being explored as the risks and costs of heatwaves rise, insurance experts said.

Michael Spranger, of the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF), said insurance cannot fix the problem of heatwaves, which will increase in frequency if

By Sam Nussey and Fanny Potkin

TOKYO/SINGAPORE, Oct 5 (Reuters)Line Corp’s 3938.T food delivery business in Thailand is gearing up for a prolonged battle with players ranging from SoftBank-backed Grab to banks after a merger with a listings heavyweight and an outside capital injection.

Expansion in food delivery by chat app operator Line in its second-largest market comes as the sector grows globally through the novel coronavirus pandemic but as questions linger over how companies will turn a profit.

Fast-growing delivery business Line Man hopes its edge will come from last month’s merger with Thailand’s leading restaurant listings site Wongnai, in addition to leveraging Line’s 47 million Thai users.

“We can reduce costs a lot and that is the path to profitability,” Line Man Wongnai Chief Executive Yod Chinsupakul said in his first interview with international media since taking up the post.

The company is targeting 20 cities by year-end, from 15 now, and is moving more delivery in-house, Chinsupakul said, having relied on Hong Kong-based logistics firm Lalamove to scale quickly.

Line Man Wongnai has raised $110 million to fund its expansion from investor BRV Capital Management – the first of Line’s overseas businesses to raise such capital.

“The average price per item tends to be very low, therefore focusing on conquering volumes is the strategy to win,” said Alfonso de los Reyes, an analyst at Singapore-based venture outfit Momentum Works.

The merger has left loss-making Line with a 46% stake in the delivery business. It also delivers food in Japan and Taiwan.

Line is being taken private by SoftBank’s domestic internet business Z Holdings 4689.T in a deal raising expectations that the chat app’s operations will serve as a gateway to overseas expansion.

SoftBank-backed Grab also delivers food in Thailand, along with leftfield challengers like