April 19, 2023

One Year of the Novata Platform: Advancing the Metrics that Matter

It’s been a busy year since we launched the Novata platform: 60 private market investors and over 3,500 companies now access our platform. Clients have reported over 45,000 data points and submitted 1,328 reports — and the numbers are growing every day. 

This growth is important to us for two reasons:

  • Mission: Growth means we’re starting to fulfill our mission: to empower private markets to achieve a more sustainable and inclusive form of capitalism. What gets measured gets managed — tens of thousands of metrics have now been measured with Novata.
  • Market utility: Our goal is to prevent the problems that have plagued ESG adoption in public markets from repeating in private markets. We don’t focus on ratings or estimations: we help gather real data, and we make it simple.

Our product development is driven by striving to understand the challenges you all face. We’ve seen three key themes emerge — if these resonate, rest assured we will be solving them. If you face other problems, please reach out — we love to listen.

Learning 1: To make ESG easy for investors, we need to make it easy for the portfolio companies

Our product started with a vision: to simplify ESG for private market investors. We learned that in order to achieve that, it isn’t enough to build a product for them, we have to simplify ESG for their stakeholders across the private markets ecosystem:

  • Help data flow between LPs and GPs
  • Help portfolio companies get started with ESG for the first time and guide them through how to calculate their metrics
  • Help investors have confidence in the data with automated checks on data quality and consistency

Learning 2: Convergence is key

ESG reporting has been a fragmented process and is challenging to navigate. To align private markets around a shared approach, we needed to: 

  • Provide a starting point for investors to collect the data most relevant to them. 
  • Support industry convergence on meaningful metrics — we have created a library of metrics with standardized definitions aligned with relevant standards and frameworks. 
  • Offer unprecedented detail into ESG performance in private markets with highly accurate benchmarks from real, self-reported data

Lesson 3: There needs to be value in the data

Collecting ESG data needs to create impact, not just satisfy regulatory and LP requirements. To help our clients use the data to create value, we:

  • Introduced data analytics and visualization tools to make it easy to generate actionable insights 
  • Refined benchmarking capabilities to compare performance across portfolios and industries, with plans to become increasingly granular in sector and geography over time
  • Helped linked ESG metrics to financial outcomes, for example, through an integration with the S&P iLEVEL platform

Looking ahead

We are excited about what the next year will bring. We recently announced our Series B funding — in addition to our consortium of Ford Foundation, Hamilton Lane, S&P Global, and Omidyar Network, Microsoft has joined our group of strategic investors. We look forward to growing the platform, guided by market needs, and continuing to deliver a seamless experience for investors and portfolio companies. Learn more about the Novata platform here and subscribe to our newsletter to stay updated on the latest Novata news.

Owen Riddall
Owen Riddall

Chief Product Officer