Promotion of Sustainability

Benesse Holdings established the Sustainability Promotion Committee in September 2018 with the objective of strengthening action throughout the group to help develop a sustainable world.

Arrangements to promote sustainability

At meetings of the Board of Directors of Benesse Holdings, sustainability and ESG [Environmental, Social and Governance] are considered important themes for discussion.

To promote sustainability and ESG initiatives throughout the Group, a Sustainability Promotion Committee has been in place since fiscal year 2018. The committee is chaired by the Head of the Sustainability Promotion Division and includes the CEO and other executive directors, presidents of major subsidiaries such as Benesse Corporation and Benesse Style Care, and heads of in-house companies. The committee discusses matters and drives initiatives related to significant challenges. It has been established based on the Business Company Management Regulations, which are the internal regulations governing the management and support of consolidated subsidiaries by Benesse Holdings. Matters discussed by the committee are regularly reported and deliberated upon in management meetings and meetings of the Board of Directors, ensuring proper supervision by the Board.

In fiscal year 2022, a dedicated organization was established directly under the oversight of the CEO, with an executive officer from Benesse Holdings serving specifically as its head.

Details of activities

The Sustainability Promotion Committee will discuss the following.

  • Decisions on policies and major initiatives related to sustainability and ESGs
  • Establishment and promotion of initiative policies for internal and outside communication related to sustainability and ESGs
  • Notification of important matters related to sustainability and ESGs

In addition, if necessary, we have set up a forum for discussions by inviting outside experts on each theme.

Sustainability Promotion Committee

Activities to date

Activities in FY 2023

November 2023

Participation in the Task Force on Nature-related Financial Disclosure (TNFD) Forum

19th meeting of the Sustainability Promotion Committee
  • ・Sustainability Study Implementation Report and KPIs of Philosophy Activities
  • ・Revision of the Human Rights Policy on AI and additional disclosures
  • ・Progress report on strengthening the female promotion pipeline
  • ・Progress report on the Group’s GHG reduction plan and EV introduction
  • ・Progress report on the establishment of non-financial KPIs

Benesse Holdings was awarded 'Silver' certification and Benesse Style Care and Waris were awarded 'Gold' certification in the PRIDE Index 2022, an index of initiatives relating to sexual minorities

October 2023

Benesse Group e-learning 'Environmental Web Training' for employees. More than 6,400 employees from 28 Group companies participated

Implemented 'Environment Day', a general morning meeting for all groups

September 2023

Integrated report 'Benesse Report 2023' published

Revised materiality announced

Benesse Group e-learning 'Sustainability Study 2023' for employees. More than 4,500 employees from 26 Group companies participated

Implemented 'Diversity Day', a general morning meeting for all groups

August 2023

Diversity and Inclusion Training - Deepening Understanding of LGBTQ at Benesse Holdings/Benesse Corporation

July 2023
18th meeting of the Sustainability Promotion Committee
  • ・FY23 Benesse Group Philosophy Activities
  • ・Strengthening the pipeline for the promotion of women
  • ・Benesse Group Environmental Declaration of Conduct
  • ・FY23 Human Rights Due Diligence Plan
  • ・Internal communication (company-wide) - FY23 morning meeting for change: Diversity Day/Environment Day/Human Rights Day
May 2023

Loan agreement signed with CHUGOKU Bank for 'Chugin Positive Impact Finance'

Activities in FY 2022

March 2023

Held a human rights study session for human rights officers across the entire Group to facilitate the exchange of opinions with experts and stay up to date on the latest thinking in the field.

Held Seventeen meeting of the Sustainability Promotion Committee
  • ・ESG and Sustainability Explanation and Implementation Report
  • ・FY22 Benesse Group’s Mission Activities
  • ・FY22 Human Rights Morning Meeting Report
  • ・FY22 Human Rights Due Diligence Report and Disclosure
  • ・External Indicators (ESG Ratings) Results Report
  • ・Establishment of Group Environmental Goals
February 2023

First ESG and Sustainability Explanation Meeting was held.

The Sustainable Planet International Conference 2023 was attended by Mr. Okada, who is an executive officer and Head of the Sustainability Promotion Committee.

January 2023

Launched Benesse Wellbeing Lab (Japanese Only)

Held Benesse Expert Dialogue
A meeting was held between Mr. Jin Kobayashi, the President and CEO of Benesse Holdings, and Mr. Kouichi Sakai, the issuer of Nikkei ESG, to discuss Benesse Holdings’ vision and transformation.
December 2022
Human rights morning meeting
Held a human rights morning meeting to promote awareness of human rights among employees. It was jointly organized by the three corporate divisions and featured a lecture on the theme of business and human rights, which was given by Mr. Nobuaki Minato of Minato Comprehensive Law Office.
November 2022
Held Sixteenth meeting of the Sustainability Promotion Committee
  • ・Sustainability Study Reports
  • ・Report on the Sustainability Study
  • ・Human rights morning meeting planning
  • ・Progress report on promoting women’s empowerment and diversity
  • ・Benesse Group Sustainability Policy and Philosophy
  • ・Establishment and disclosure of non-financial KPIs
  • ・Benesse Wellbeing Report
September 2022

Benesse Group employees participate in the e-Learning course “Sustainability Study 2022.” Over 4,500 employees from 28 group companies participated.

Diversity Day, an online program for the entire group
Mr. Kobayashi, President and Representative Director of Benesse Holdings, explained the significance of diversity initiatives. More than 3,000 employees participated in the meeting.
August 2022

Conducted "Training on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity: Understanding LGBTQ and Creating a Comfortable Workplace" (August-September)

Establishment of an external consultation service where outside professional counselors provide consultation on sexuality, including gender identity and sexual orientation, in the workplace.

July 2022
Held Fifteenth meeting of the Sustainability Promotion Committee
  • ・Philosophy Subcommittee Activities and Future Plans
  • ・Human Rights Assessment Report
  • ・Promoting Group Diversity
  • ・Clarification of social values
  • ・First ESG Sustainability Briefing
June 2022
Conducted a survey on Unconscious Bias
As one of the efforts to realize a workplace and society where people can support each other, a survey on "Unconscious Bias" (unconscious assumptions and prejudices) was conducted. More than 2,500 people from the group participated in the survey.

"Benesse Meet Up," a study group for Benesse Group’s philosophy activities, begins.

May 2022

Published the philosophy booklet "BATON" as a tool for group employees to understand the philosophy. Distributed to all Group employees.

Activities in FY 2021

March 2022
Held Fourteenth meeting of the Sustainability and ESG Promotion Committee
  • ・Philosophy Project/ Philosophy Booklet Application Strategies
  • ・Report on Human Rights Initiatives
  • ・Climate Change Trends and Directions for Group Expansion
  • ・Organizing social issues and how to proceed

Human rights study sessions for human rights staff from all group companies to exchange opinions with experts and knowledgeable persons and learn the latest information

January 2022

Benesse’s morning assembly on the company anniversary was held. We invited Professor Maeno Takashi of Keio University Graduate School to give a special lecture entitled “Introduction to Well-Being for the Age of ‘Living Well’” to all our employees.

November 2021
Held Thirteenth meeting of the Sustainability and ESG Promotion Committee
  • ・Increasing Value to Society
  • ・Philosophy Project
  • ・Sustainability Study
  • ・ESG Progress Report and Human Rights Initiatives
September 2021

Benesse Group employees participate in the e-Learning course “Sustainability Study 2021.” Approximately 4,000 employees from 28 group companies participated.

September ~
November 2021

Conducted human rights due diligence with respect to group companies. Expanded the number of group companies covered since last fiscal year.

July 2021
Held twelfth meeting of the Sustainability and ESG Promotion Committee
  • ・Sustainability and ESG - discussion for realizing the ideal as a medium-term plan
  • ・Progress report on ESG assessment and consultation
  • ・About a sustainability study
May 2021
Nikkei Sustainability and ESG Conference attended by Tamotsu Adachi, Representative Director, Chairman, and CEO of Benesse Holdings (at that time)
  • ・Holding lectures on Benesse’s Sustainability and discussions with Kouichi Sakai, publisher of Nikkei ESG
Held eleventh meeting of the Sustainability and ESG Promotion Committee
  • ・About how to move forward with sustainability and ESGs this year
  • ・Progress on ESG evaluation organization response
  • ・Action plan for the Benesse Philosophy Project

Acquiring SBT Initiative Certification

Activities in FY 2020

March 2021
Benesse Stakeholder Dialogue conducted

Tamotsu Adachi, Representative Director and Chairman and CEO of Benesse Holdings (at that time), and Kouichi Sakai, publisher of Nikkei ESG, talked about such themes as initiatives for human resources for the growth of Benesse from the perspectives of sustainability and ESG.

February 2021
Held the tenth meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・Reported on human rights due diligence and future actions
  • ・Evaluated the ESG strategy
  • ・Reported the Benesse Sustainability Study 2020 results and future actions
  • ・Reported philosophy project progress

Gained the highest selection rank “Leader board” in CDP supplier engagement evaluation

January 2021

The sharing of materiality practice cases in the morning assembly meeting on company anniversary

December 2020
The conduction of the Benesse Stakeholder Dialogue to hear opinions from outside experts
  • ・Invited professor Akie Iriyama from Waseda Business School, who is well-known for “Ambidextrous business” and set “Innovation” as the main topic for a dialogue with the Benesse Holdings’ CEO Tamotsu Adachi (at that time)

Being evaluated as the highest rating “A” in the CDP2020 survey “Climate Change” for the third consecutive year

August ~
November 2020

The conduction of human rights due diligence for the group companies

November 2020
The implementation of “Benesse Sustainability Study 2020” e-Learning course for Benesse Group employees
  • ・Approximately 4,000 people from 28 companies in the Benesse group participated
  • ・Conveyed how corporate philosophy and sustainability are linked together. After that, through some example activities cases, the employees gained a more in-depth understanding of materiality. Furthermore, there were explanations to employees about the importance of sustainability in the new middle term business plan
  • ・The Sustainability Promotion Committee considered issues such as “which current actions should be further improved upon” and “which are new things that should be attempted”
  • ・Collected some materiality example activities cases that are currently in progress. There are approximately 3,600 cases being collected.
October 2020
Held ninth meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・The report of Benesse’s Sustainability Study for 2020
  • ・The report on the progress of the philosophy project
  • ・The consideration for approaching the ESG field (specifically focusing on S – society area) and human rights
July 2020
Held eighth meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・Consideration for planning the philosophical project
  • ・The review of materiality penetration and practicing enhancement plan
June 2020
Held seventh meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・The report on the impact of the new Covid-19 epidemic on social changes and sustainability activities
  • ・The consideration of materiality penetration and practicing enhancement plan
  • ・The review of human rights activity plans

The enactment of human rights policies by the Benesse group

Activities in FY 2019

February 2020
The Chairperson, Mr. Adachi (at that time), was a plenary speaker at Sustainable Brands 2020 YOKOHAMA, where companies, local government bodies, and organizations from Japan and abroad gathered
  • ・Reported on progress of sustainability for the Group
  • ・Introduced two examples of activities based on the Sustainability Vision

Reference article Benesse plenary session at Sustainable Brands 2020 Yokohama - Conveying "Live well" to society, conveying "Live well" to the future (March 18, 2020) (Japanese Only)

February 2020
Held sixth meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・Details of the disclosure and identification of the Benesse Group’s materiality
  • ・Discussion on the Group’s engagement with human rights
  • ・Summary for the financial year and direction for next financial year
January 2020
Held morning assembly on the anniversary of the company founding
  • ・Delivered a message to the employees on the group’s materiality
  • ・Employee presentation on case studies
December 2019
Held External Seminar on Diversity

Planned as a corporate study meeting to learn how to make a friendly workplace to people of diverse backgrounds but primarily LGBT. HR and general affairs representatives from across the group participated.

Mika Yakushi (representative director, ReBit Authorized NPO)
November 2019
Held second Sustainability Meetup
Miki Matheson (Education Committee Member, International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and Education Committee Member, International Olympic Committee (IOC))

Reference article “Meetup” is an employees’ study group on social issues: Education can both make and change discrimination and prejudices (Benesse’s action on sustainability, December 24, 2019)

October 2019
Held fifth meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・Reported results of the Sustainability Study
  • ・Identification of the Benesse Group’s materiality
  • ・Progress of the Group’s ESG activities, future direction
Held training to experience SDGs at Benesse Group’s Tokyo Individualized Educational Institute
Six days over September 26 to October 23
Held training to experience SDGs (sustainable development goals) through card games, and to deepen understanding
Approximately 250 TIEI employees from across greater Tokyo

Reference article Wanting to talk to children about the SDGs in their own words: thoughts on TIEI’s new employee workshop (Benesse’s action on sustainability, November 26, 2019)

September 2019
Held first Sustainability Meetup in which we invited outside experts to help employees consider social problems
child poverty
Hyungsik Lee (representative director, Learning for All NPO)

Reference article “Sustainability Meetup” is an employees' study group on social issues: providing support for children dealing with problems (Benesse’s action on sustainability, October 31, 2019)

August 2019
Started the "Sustainability Study", e-Learning for Benesse Group employees
  • ・Approximately 3,000 people tackled the e-Learning over three months
  • ・Explained why Benesse engages in sustainability and SDGs with reference to the corporate philosophy, focusing on the employees' in-depth understanding
  • ・At the completion of the e-Learning, gathered answers in relation to the "What Benesse should be in 10 years’ time," which will be used for discussion for future materiality decisions
May 2019
Held fourth meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・Considered employee communication measures for FY 2019
  • ・Discussed summary of the ESG evaluation, how to respond to issues, and opportunities for the Benesse Group

Activities in FY 2018

March 2019
Third meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・Employee feedback on sustainability activities reported
  • ・Finalization of Sustainability Vision
  • ・Sustainability activities in FY2019
Training sessions to raise understanding in the group of the SDGs
  • ・Approximately 20 individuals from group companies participated
  • ・Qualified employees acted as instructors to provide hands-on experience of the outlook embodied by the SDGs through SDG card game
January 2019
Morning assembly on company anniversary
  • ・Action on sustainability announced to employees
January 2019 Reporting of activities to outside directors and auditors
January 2019
Second meeting of the Sustainability Committee
  • ・Second meeting to consider the Sustainability Vision
  • ・Re-verification of corporate philosophy in light of the Sustainability Vision
  • ・Discussion of materiality process
December 2018 Committee’s establishment and its activities announced to group employees in C, the Benesse Group’s in-house newsletter
November 2018

Press release announcing establishment of the committee

First meeting of the Sustainability Committee
Part 1
Input by invited outside experts on theme of “SDG commitments required of companies in the future”
Part 2
First meeting to re-verify corporate philosophy and DNA, discuss 2030 social environment forecasts, and consider the Sustainability Vision
September 2018

Establishment of the Sustainability and ESG Promotion Committee and approval by Benesse Holdings' Board of Directors

Group employees informed

Risk management

We have established the Risk and Compliance Committee to implement risk management and ensure compliance throughout the Group. The committee is chaired by the head of the management division responsible for risk management and compliance. Participants include the CEO, heads of the management departments, the presidents of Benesse Corporation and Benesse Style Care, and business representatives of these companies. The committee aggregates the results of various risk assessments in each Group company, including sustainability-related risks such as those with respect to human resources, information security, and business continuity planning, and develops and takes measures to address risks across the Group. The committee regularly reports the results to the Board of Directors and receives necessary instructions.

Last updated : 2023/12/04