Could This Exciting ESG Stock Be a Breakout Tech Star of 2021?

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing can be a controversial topic among investors and analysts.

That’s because, while a growing number of investors make a conscious decision, whenever possible, to invest in companies committed to helping make the world a better place...

Other investors instead focus exclusively on maximizing the returns on their investment without regard to environmental impact.

The merits of both of these approaches can be debated for days… but every once in a while an investment comes along that appears to be so potentially strong that it captures the attention of both groups in a powerful way.

That’s what looks to be happening with a one-of-a-kind Canadian company that is not only likely to be very attractive to ESG-focused also could become a breakout star of 2021 among tech stocks.

This company is Facedrive (TSXV:FD,OTC:FDVRF) a company that initially launched as an eco-friendly ridesharing company but has since expanded into multiple verticals.

Facedrive calls itself a multi-faceted “people-and-planet first” tech ecosystem offering socially responsible services to local communities with a strong commitment to doing business fairly, equitably, and sustainably.

And make no mistake – investors who got in early on Facedrive have already done well, as the company’s value has increased more than 440% since the beginning of 2020.

Those substantial gains, however, were only the beginning for them. The company has continued to expand, including the recent launch of its Steer EV subscription service in May 2021.

We think the company’s recent growth strides – combined with a continued focus on eco-friendly tech breakthroughs in our post-pandemic world – could put Facedrive in a position to be one of the most attractive tech stocks in all of North America for 2021.

Here are 5 reasons why we think investors should consider looking into Facedrive (TSXV:FD,OTC:FDVRF) for themselves as soon as possible:

1. Facedrive is built upon a solid foundation as an eco-friendly ride-sharing platform

The company began over five years ago as a carbon offset ride-sharing service designed to help fight climate change by offsetting future greenhouse gas emissions with every ride provided.

By bringing electric vehicles to the ridesharing industry – which had been surprisingly bad for rising carbon emissions – the company was providing consumers with both convenience and eco-friendly options to an everyday need: transportation.

With the tap of a button on the company’s Facedrive app, consumers have access to a wide variety of eco-friendly vehicle choices including an electric hybrid of a gas-powered vehicle.

After the consumer has arrived at the destination, the in-app algorithm crunches the numbers and calculates the amount of CO2 that was created during the journey.

A portion of the fare is then set aside to plant trees, helping offset the carbon footprint from the ride.

Since 2019, Facedrive has planted over 4000 trees, helping pave a healthier future for generations to come.

2. Facedrive recently announced the successful launch of Steer – its electric vehicle subscription service – in Toronto

Steer is a technology-driven Electric Vehicle (EV)/Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) subscription platform that was acquired by Facedrive in September 2020.

Incubated within and backed by Exelon, a Fortune 100 company and the largest producer of clean energy in the United States, Steer was created to challenge the traditional car purchase and ownership model and accelerate the general public’s move to environmentally friendly transportation.

Steer’s all-in subscription price for an electric vehicle – with a choice of various Tesla models – includes insurance, routine maintenance and repair, and a concierge service that removes the hassle of car ownership and enables seamless vehicle swaps.

Response to this launch has been brisk, with Facedrive reporting over 1,000 registrations confirmed in just the first several days after launch – and the company now plans to scale up operations across Canada and the United States.

This launch provides consumers with hassle-free, on-demand access to high-quality electric vehicles with just a few clicks of their smartphone...which we think places the company squarely at the forefront of the most attractive tech offerings for 2021 and beyond.

3. The company’s expansion into new verticals gives it a fully developed portfolio of business lines

Facedrive (TSXV:FD,OTC:FDVRF) was founded in 2016 to offer a transportation network that was inherently and proactively socially responsible.

The company then branched out beyond its ridesharing roots and added three additional verticals all with the same mandate of accomplishing fair, equitable, and sustainable business.

Those three verticals are (1) food delivery, (2) health tech services, and (3) an e-commerce platform

Facedrive Foods

Facedrive Foods helps connect people with their favorite restaurants and food stores in their area and provides them with great green deals. In addition, the company contributes a portion of proceeds from each delivery toward local tree-planting initiatives to offset carbon emissions in the environment.

According to the company, Facedrive Foods offers access to more than 5,000 local and national favorites across Canada and has more than 3,500 registered drivers with projected gross food sales of $30 million per year.

Facedrive Health

Facedrive Health strives to develop and offer innovative technological solutions to the most acute health challenges including its proprietary TraceSCAN wearable technology for contact tracing.

The TraceSCAN contact-tracing wearable solution, developed jointly by Facedrive Health and a group of researchers from the University of Waterloo, is powered by cutting-edge Bluetooth technology enabling it to work as a standalone device or in conjunction with mobile-powered solutions such as the Government of Canada’s COVID Alert app.

In March 2021, the company announced that TraceSCAN had achieved co-sell-ready status on the Microsoft Partner Network, which provides the company with a significant scaling opportunity by gaining access to Microsoft’s global customer and partner base.

Facedrive Marketplace

The company’s ecommerce vertical, Facedrive Marketplace, offers curated merchandise created from sustainably sourced materials.

Facedrive Marketplace is led by a team of developers, designers, and digital marketers who aspire to transform and enhance the lives of others using technology.

This team of tech enthusiasts handpicks fun and useful tech gadgets that consumers can shop for while supporting a social cause that focuses on transforming the lives of other communities using technology.

4. The Biden Administration’s Emphasis on the Environment Has Triggered a “Green Energy Boom”

Since Joe Biden was sworn into office in January 2021, the green energy movement has continued its take-off with increased momentum.

Biden has called climate change “the number one issue facing humanity.”

This is why CNBC says, “Biden’s Presidency Could be a Boost for Impact Investing.”

And Forbes says, “Socially Responsible Investing Is Likely To Gain Momentum Under Biden.”

Immediately upon taking office, Biden rejoined the Paris Climate Accord and has so far made climate change a critical part of his push for job creation and infrastructure improvement within the nation.

The new “Biden Green Energy Boom” is great news for investors who have already seen substantial gains in green companies throughout 2020.

Enphase Energy jumped 490% in 2020...

Digital Turbine soared 673%…

And Tesla became one of the biggest companies on the market with incredible 684% gains

While companies like Tesla have gotten the majority of the focus from the mainstream press, we think an under-the-radar eco-friendly company like Facedrive (TSXV:FD,OTC:FDVRF) may be one way for tech investors to play the Green Energy Boom for potential upside throughout 2021.

Launched as an environmentally focused rideshare platform originally, Facedrive has now transitioned into a more complete ESG platform with multiple pillars.

This allows consumers who engage with the company in one pillar to then continue demonstrating their commitment to an eco-friendly lifestyle and incorporate more of Facedrive’s other services into their everyday activities.

5. Younger Investors Are Focusing More On Socially Responsible Investments... And We Think These Will Include Companies Like Facedrive

Over the past two years, ESG investing has become more popular, with some of Wall Street’s biggest names – including some established institutional investors – investing increasingly in ESG companies.

In addition, millennials becoming more active investors are demonstrating a preference for socially responsible investing.

According to a report published by the Responsible Investment Association, millennials are more likely than Baby Boomers to believe that companies with good social and environmental practices are better long-term investments. In addition, 82 percent of millennial investors believe that responsible investing will become more important in the next five years.

And according to some reports, 84% of millennials have named ESG investing as a main goal...with the vast majority saying they’re willing to pay more for a sustainable alternative.

This way of thinking by a large segment of investors represents a new opportunity for companies that are positioned well in the ESG space.

And we think Facedrive (TSXV:FD,OTC:FDVRF) absolutely fits that description.

With a company built on a foundation of eco-friendly ridesharing – a market aimed squarely at millennials – an opportunity exists for younger investors to not only become devoted consumers of Facedrive’s services...but also potential long-term ESG investors thanks to the company’s developing portfolio of green business lines.

Other companies looking to capitalize on the trillion-dollar ESG push:

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is one of Big Tech’s leaders in the sustainability push. The company is going above and beyond in its emissions goals, aiming to be carbon neutral in the next ten years. A feat that will not be an easy task for such a massive technology corporation. Additionally, Microsoft is has also pioneered new solutions to aid other companies in curbing their emissions as well.

Microsoft has built hardware and software to help monitor and better understand the effect of different institutions have on the planet, gathering data to better figure out how companies and people can improve. The company is creating tools to better handle the world’s growing waste crisis.

In addition to its investments and green operations, Microsoft is also building the next generation of hardware and software to help the world reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. Its Azure IoT, for example, connects and manages internet-connected solar panels to improve efficiency and open a line for an entirely new way of sharing energy within communities.

Conor Kelly, the software engineer who is leading the distributed solar energy project for Microsoft Azure IoT explained, “We need to decarbonize the global economy to avoid catastrophic climate change,” adding, “The first thing we can do, and the easiest thing we can do, is focus on electricity.”

Other tech giants are getting involved, as well. Both Facebook and Google have embarked on similar paths to Microsoft, with massive business-wide changes with the goal of becoming leaders in the sustainability space.

Take Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL), for example. Despite being one of the largest companies on the planet, in many ways it has lived up to its original “Don’t Be Evil” slogan. Not only is Google powering its data centers with renewable energy, it is also on the cutting edge of innovation in the industry, investing in new technology and green solutions to build a more sustainable tomorrow. It’s bid to reduce its carbon footprint has been well received by both younger and older investors. And as the need to slow down climate change becomes increasingly dire, it’s easy to see why.

Its focus is on raising the bar for smarter and more efficient use of the world’s limited resources. It is building sustainable, energy-efficient data centers and workplaces. It is also harnessing artificial intelligence to utilize energy more efficiently.  

Google CEO Sundar Pichai explained, “We are committed to doing our part. Sustainability has been a core value for us since Larry and Sergey founded Google two decades ago. We were the first major company to become carbon neutral in 2007. We were the first major company to match our energy use with 100 percent renewable energy in 2017. We operate the cleanest global cloud in the industry, and we’re the world’s largest corporate purchaser of renewable energy.”

Social media giant Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) isn’t ignoring the ESG push, either. Not only have they made dramatic progress towards their goal to run on 100% renewable energy by the end of 2020, they’re working to build more water-efficient data centers. In fact, their data centers use 80 percent less water than typical data centers, which is huge considering how fast this new industry is growing.

Facebook has even gone a step further with its focus on building more sustainable workplaces. It’s building designs incorporate a number of renewable energy sources and water recycling methods, in addition to promoting the recycling and sustainability of all products consumed on site.

In 2019, Facebook became the number one corporate buyer of renewable energy in the United States, and second in the world. It has also made major investments in developing renewable projects in Texas, Ireland, Denmark and Norway.

Facebook has even gone a step further with its focus on building more sustainable workplaces. It’s building designs incorporate a number of renewable energy sources and water recycling methods, in addition to promoting the recycling and sustainability of all products consumed on site.

Energy companies shouldn’t be ignored, either. As one the world’s leading renewables producers, NextEra Energy (NYSE:NEE) is literally building the path towards sustainability. To make matters more exciting, the company was the number one capital investor in green energy infrastructure, and the fifth largest investor across all sectors.

NextEra Energy works with many different companies like Apple, Amazon, Nestle Waters North America among others to help them become more sustainable by investing in renewable energy sources as well as helping them reduce their carbon footprint through providing quality products and services that lower utility bills.

NextEra is the world’s leading producer of wind and solar energy, so it’s no surprise that it has received some love from the ‘millennial dollar.’ In fact, in 2018, the company was the number one capital investor in green energy infrastructure, and fifth largest capital investor across all sectors. No other company has been more active in reducing carbon emissions. And they’re just getting started. By 2025, the company aims to reduce their own emissions by 67 percent while doubling their electricity production from a 2005 benchmark. To put this into perspective, if all of America’s utilities were able to achieve NextEra Energy’s projected 2025 emissions rate, absolute CO2 emissions for the power sector would be approximately 75% lower than they were in 2005.

Even Big Oil is jumping on board, diversifying their portfolios and to hedge their bets in the rapidly changing new reality of energy. And no other oil major takes this more seriously than TotalEnergies (NYSE:TTE). maintains a ‘big picture’ outlook across all of its endeavors. It is not only aware of the needs that are not being met by a significant portion of the world’s growing population, it is also hyper-aware of the looming climate crisis if changes are not made. In its push to create a better world for all, it has committed to contributing to each of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Total checks every box in the ESG checklist. It is promoting diversity and safety, making massive changes in its day to day operations to ensure that its business is environmentally sound, and has even committed to going carbon neutral by 2050 or sooner. It’s no surprise that shareholders are loving its forward-thinking approach.

Canadian companies are jumping on board, as well:

Shopify Inc (TSX:SHOP) is playing a pivotal role in the e-commerce boom. Not only does it help anyone and everyone who wants to have a try at launching their own business, it gives them the tools and resources to do so. And it’s not without its ethical grounding, either. Shopify is pushing towards sustainability in a major way. It has started its own sustainability fund, which it adds $5 million to each year to help tackle the looming climate crisis.

Polaris Infrastructure (TSX:PIF) Is a Toronto-based renewable energy giant with a global footprint. The company’s biggest projects are in Latin America. It’s Nicaragua geothermal project, for example, is already producing over 77 MW of renewable electricity.  And in Peru, its El Carmen and 8 de Augusto power plants, is set to produce a combined 17MW of electricity in the near future.

Telus Corporation’s (TSX:T) long-standing commitment to putting its customers first fuels every aspect of its business, has had it a definitive leader in Canada. In fact, Telus Health is one of the country’s biggest healthcare IT providers. And it’s done so with sustainability in focus.

Driven by its goal to connect all Canadians for good, it has contributed over $55 in community giving, reduced emissions by 31% and has four consecutive years on the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index.

Shaw Communications Inc (TSX:SJR.B) is one of Canada’s leading telecom infrastructure and cloud service providers. Its dominance in Canada’s telecom sector means that if any internet-based services want to operate, they’ll likely be utilizing the company’s infrastructure. After all, without telecoms, these TaaS companies would not be able to operate. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing when you consider Shaw’s sustainability goals. In fact, it is one of the biggest customers of Bullfrog Power which sources its electricity from a blend of wind energy and hydropower. It is also building its own portfolio of clean energy investments.

Magna International (TSX:MG) is a great way to gain exposure to the wider alternative energy boom - and by extension ESG - market without betting big on one of the new hot automaker stocks tearing up Robinhood right now. The 63-year-old Canadian manufacturing giant provides mobility technology for automakers of all types. From GM and Ford to luxury brands like BMW and Tesla, Magna is a master at striking deals. And it’s clear to see why. The company has the experience and reputation that automakers are looking for.

By. Nicholas Perry


Forward-Looking Statements

This publication contains forward-looking information which is subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements.  Forward looking statements in this publication include that the demand for ride sharing services will grow; that Steer can help change car ownership in favor of subscription services; that new tech deals will be signed by Facedrive and deals signed already will increase company revenues; that Facedrive will achieve its plans for manufacturing and selling Tracescan devices; that Facedrive will be able to expand to the US and globally; that Facedrive will be able to fund its capital requirements in the near term and long term; and that Facedrive will be able to carry out its business plans. These forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information.  Risks that could change or prevent these statements from coming to fruition include that riders are not as attracted to EV rides as expected; that competitors may offer better or cheaper alternatives to the Facedrive businesses; changing governmental laws and policies; the company’s ability to obtain and retain necessary licensing in each geographical area in which it operates; the success of the company’s expansion activities and whether markets justify additional expansion; the ability of the company to attract drivers who have electric vehicles and hybrid cars; and that the products co-branded by Facedrive may not be as merchantable as expected. The forward-looking information contained herein is given as of the date hereof and we assume no responsibility to update or revise such information to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.


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