5 Companies That Will Probably Still Be Around in 100 Years

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Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

Each year since 2005, Corporate Knights Capital, a Canadian financial research and information company, has released the Global 100 list of most sustainable companies. These companies span every industry from pharmaceutical to financial to retail but they are tied together by a common set of characteristics identified by CK Capital to be indicative of stability and long-term viability.

CK Capital concedes that “determining which companies are ‘sustainable’ and which are not is a challenging enterprise,” but it’s not impossible. In fact, Vice President of Research Doug Morrow would argue that sustainability can be quantifiably measured, which establishes a data-driven framework on which to build more qualitative insights about what a sustainable corporation looks like and why sustainability matters.

Speaking to Forbes, Morrow offered this definition of sustainability: “On the one hand, it means doing more with less; squeezing more output out of every capital input, including financial, human and natural capital. But the hallmark of a sustainable enterprise is not just efficiency, but also mechanisms to encourage meritocracy, diversity, innovation and long-term planning. Management teams at sustainable corporations are afforded room to think and plan beyond the next financial quarter.”

CK Capital is also quick to point out that highly sustainable companies are often highly valuable companies — an idea that Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett appears to agree with. In his 2013 letter to shareholders, Buffett reflected that “We completed two large acquisitions, spending almost $18 billion to purchase all of NV Energy and a major interest in H. J. Heinz. Both companies fit us well and will be prospering a century from now.” What better investment, after all, than one that lasts a lifetime?

Here are a couple of the world’s most sustainable companies — businesses that are highly likely to be around 100 years from now — according to CK Capital’s 2014 Global 100.

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