The transportation sector, and specifically road freight transport, are known to be carbon intensive. TIP Group, a major global trailer and truck full services provider, is trying to break this association—and driving the energy transition both within its corporate operations and for its customer base.
TIP Group, which specializes in trailer and truck leasing, rental, maintenance and repair—as well as digital solutions and the sale of used equipment—operates more than 130 maintenance and repair workshops across Europe and Canada, and works with leading brands like Amazon and DHL. The company has a goal of being carbon neutral in its operations by 2030 and within its value chain by 2050. It’s a tall order–the trucking industry is famously carbon intensive. But in addition to the positive impacts on our planet, TIP Group’s leadership recognizes the business opportunity in being climate-focused.
“The benefit of operating in an industry that is traditionally thought of as polluting from an environmental perspective is that we can have an enormously positive impact. And that’s what we’re doing.”
-Markus Pretzl, Director of Environmental Social Governance & Environmental Health and Safety
Challenge: The high stakes of an incomplete footprint
TIP Group previously calculated its Scope 1 & 2 emissions in-house, using publicly available emissions factors, but found this resulted in a footprint that wasn’t according to the high quality standards TIP Group’s ESG team aims for.
Because TIP Group had set a public carbon neutrality target, it needed a comprehensive view of its entire footprint to identify reduction opportunities and create a detailed year-over-year action plan. TIP Group also wanted to stand out as a supplier that could help catalyze or accelerate other companies’ work towards emissions reductions.
“Announcing a carbon neutrality goal sounds nice, but there’s real potential for reputational damage if you can’t substantiate that pledge with a plan based on high quality data.”
-Markus Pretzl, Director of ESG/EHS
Solution: Use Watershed to easily build an audit-ready footprint
TIP Group used Watershed to build a comprehensive corporate footprint and found the results actionable. In particular, their team benefited from:
- Intuitive software that doesn’t rely on consultants: “In a previous role working with another carbon accounting vendor, it was much more time-consuming because I had to process a lot of the data myself and hand over polished results to consultants. Watershed’s user-friendliness in uploading and visualizing data is invaluable.” -Kerri Robinson, ESG Advocacy Manager
- Actionable recommendations to customers: “Watershed doesn’t just give you a bunch of data points that you can look into and maybe use when there is a reporting request,” shared Pretzl. “It really invites you to continue working on your net zero emissions trajectory with industry-specific recommendations.” The company is leaning into setting the best example of sustainability possible, starting with its TIP Group workshop sites, where it is equipping roofs with photovoltaic systems, replacing old lighting with more energy efficient LED lighting and modernizing its heating systems.
- Data to prioritize engaging its supply chain: “We previously felt that, as an intermediary within the transportation industry, we were limited on the influence we could have regarding carbon reduction. Now, with the visibility we have from Watershed, we are taking an informed approach to collaborate across our whole value chain.” -Markus Pretzl
- Visibility into its own customers’ targets and priorities: “Using Watershed helps us become even more customer-oriented. We can easily see our customers’ climate commitments and then look into how we can support them to reach these goals.” -Markus Pretzel
"Watershed is intuitive and makes it very easy to DIY. Whether you’re trying to determine the best suppliers to engage with, tracking progress to targets, or modeling different emissions reductions scenarios, you can do it without needing additional consultant support.”
Result: Real emissions reductions to benefit TIP Group and its customers
With emissions data in hand, TIP Group feels prepared for a future with increasing regulatory oversight and where sustainability is a larger factor in winning business partnerships. The team has realized the following results of its work with Watershed so far:
- Confidence in meeting publicly stated targets: “Watershed helped us build a trajectory of where to start to get to our goal. For example, we knew that switching over to renewable energy would be a part of our work, but now we can easily see how this change will impact us year over year to meet our 2030 target.” -Markus Pretzl
- Feeling more prepared for regulatory requirements, including the CSRD: “With Watershed, we avoid regulatory risk. We will face much more strict reporting requirements in the EU with CSRD requiring businesses to demonstrate the credibility of data, and having a tool that is audit-ready is a huge asset.” -Kerri Robinson
- Making climate a selling point: “For our current and prospective customers that have a net zero goal, there will always be a residual amount of carbon they need to either reduce or pay money to offset. It’s become easier to link our impact as a vendor to financial figures." -Markus Pretzl
- Helping customers drive down their emissions: In addition to the positive impacts of an increasingly zero-emissions fleet (including electric refrigerated trailers and electric trucks), TIP Group is sharing actionable data back to its customers. Its telematics products monitor vehicle data like tire pressure and brake performance—which have an impact on fuel consumption and therefore carbon emissions—that customers can then address at one of TIP Group’s workshops to capture emissions reductions.
- Building another avenue for accessing capital in the future: “We have linked several other ESG-focused KPIs to our revolving credit facility, and—now that we have the visibility into our carbon data—we have the possibility to include sustainability KPIs in the future so that our climate work can generate meaningful returns.” -Markus Pretzl
“I was astonished when I saw the output from Watershed. The reporting is very granular and the platform sets you up well for future action.”-Markus Pretzl