SEBI’s Mandate for BRSR (Business Responsibility and Sustainability Reporting)

  • 3 min. read
  • Akash Keshav

Introduction:

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has taken a significant step in promoting sustainable and responsible business practices by mandating the Business Responsibility and Sustainability Report (BRSR) for listed companies. The BRSR is a comprehensive disclosure framework that aims to enhance transparency, accountability, and long-term value creation for companies, investors, and society at large.

Understanding the BRSR:

The BRSR is a reporting framework designed to assess and communicate a company’s adherence to sustainable and responsible business practices. It requires companies to disclose their social, environmental, and governance-related initiatives and performance. SEBI’s objective behind introducing the BRSR is to encourage companies to integrate sustainability into their core business strategy, thereby contributing to the overall well-being of society.

Key Features and Disclosures:

  1. Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Parameters: The BRSR mandates companies to disclose their ESG-related policies, initiatives, and performance. This includes information on environmental impact, social welfare programs, labor practices, product responsibility, board diversity, and more.
  2. Stakeholder Engagement: Companies are expected to engage with stakeholders, such as investors, employees, customers, and local communities, through BRSR. In addition to sharing key data points, companies are also expected to provide qualitative information on their ESG initiatives.
  3. Governance and Risk Management: Companies must disclose their governance structure, policies, and practices. This includes information on board composition, risk management, whistleblowing mechanisms, and efforts to prevent corruption and unethical practices.
  4. Sustainability Metrics: The BRSR expects companies to report on specific sustainability metrics, such as greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption, waste management, employee health and safety, diversity and inclusion, and community development initiatives.

Benefits of BRSR Compliance:

  1. Enhanced Corporate Reputation: External stakeholders are looking at the BRSR closely. Transparent reporting on sustainable practices helps build trust and credibility among stakeholders, leading to an enhanced corporate reputation.
  2. Improved Investor Confidence: Investors increasingly consider ESG factors while making investment decisions. BRSR compliance provides investors with valuable information to assess a company’s long-term sustainability performance and risk management practices.
  3. Competitive Advantage: Companies that integrate sustainability into their business strategy gain a competitive edge by attracting socially responsible investors, customers, and employees.
  4. Risk Mitigation: Identifying and addressing sustainability risks through BRSR reporting helps companies proactively manage potential legal, regulatory, and reputational risks.

BRSR and Sprih:

BRSR consists of over 140 questions that involve more than 10 different stakeholders/departments to gather the necessary data. Currently, the process is manual and burdensome for the team responsible for preparing the BRSR, raising concerns about data authenticity. Ensuring data auditability is a significant challenge, and monitoring progress becomes nearly impossible. To address this issue, Sprih has developed a comprehensive platform that simplifies BRSR preparation for companies. Book a demo to see how Sprih can assist you in streamlining your BRSR preparation.

Conclusion

SEBI’s introduction of the Business Responsibility and Sustainability Reports (BRSR) is a crucial measure to promote sustainable and responsible business practices in India. This framework mandates companies to disclose their ESG initiatives and performance, fostering transparency, accountability, and value creation for both businesses and society. Compliance with the BRSR not only enhances corporate reputation but also attracts investors and provides a competitive advantage in today’s rapidly evolving business environment. This initiative represents a positive stride towards establishing a more sustainable and responsible business ecosystem in India.

However, complying with the BRSR poses significant challenges for the compliance team. Sprih can serve as a valuable partner in mitigating these challenges by automating the entire process in an auditable manner. By leveraging our platform, your workload can be significantly reduced, allowing for more efficient and streamlined compliance with the BRSR requirements.

If you are interested to know about other compliance needs relevant to your business, you check it using our Compliance Assessment Tool.

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