Investing in communities

SEB wants to contribute to building a society we all want to, and can, be part of. In addition to the role that our business plays, we support local communities. We share both time and money and work with carefully chosen partners.

At SEB, we engage for future generations. We support the development of local communities, in active partnership with organisations and institutions in our home markets. We focus on innovation and entrepreneurship, ­children and youth as well as education and know-how. SEB partners with best in class organisations and charities and remain involved in the decisions about how our finances are spent. For us, it is important to be involved in the decisions about how the money is spent and we always seek to use our resources so that we make the most of our investments.

SEB is not allied to any political parties. We do not provide financial support to any political parties, nor do we make any other type of political donation.

Entrepreneurship

SEB has a long tradition of supporting entrepreneurs and small companies. We do this through our core business in collaboration with well-established organisations that support entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship.

In Sweden, we meet thousands of students through our cooperation with Ung Företagsamhet (Young enterprising). We meet with start-up companies through Venture Cup, Connect, IFS (International Entrepreneur Association) and Nyföretagarcentrum as well as with the most experienced ones through Entrepreneur of the Year. We also work with the Swedish Prince Daniel’s fellowship, Business Challenge and SUP46 Start-Up People of Sweden. In 2015, we were involved in 70 activities where we met around 10,000 people. 275 SEB employees were engaged and invested 1,700 hours.

Baltic engagement

In Finland, SEB supports young entrepreneurs through Junior Achievements, and we have a wide range of activities towards entrepreneurs also in all three Baltic countries. Some of the examples include the Estonian project, "Brain Hunt" that aims to find innovative and environmentally friendly innovations. In Lithuania, SEB partners with the magazine "BznStart" in the project "240 Minutes of Charge" for existing and future businesses ready for challenges. Examples in Latvia include the "Contest of ideas", the TV broadcast for start-ups "Company's secret" and the award for developing companies "Gazelle", in cooperation with Daily business.

Promoting new business ideas

SEB is a national partner to Venture Cup, which is the leading contest for those who want to develop their business idea into a successful business concept. During the year, SEB has provided financial support, awarded prizes in the Venture Cup finals and hosted an event where all Sweden finalists had the opportunity to get inspiration and advice.
SEB is also engaged in the competition “Settler of the Year” for people of foreign origin that live in Sweden and started a ­company with limited resources. In addition, SEB works actively with Junior Achievement, both in Sweden and the Baltics. It is a programme for high school students who get the opportunity to run their own business during a school year. 

Engagement for children and youth

Since 1997, SEB has partnered with Mentor, a foundation focusing on drug prevention among youth, aiming to create relationships and build trust between young people and adults. Employees are involved as mentors, either individually for one young person, in school classes on several occasions, or for just one day at a school. Students visit SEB’s offices, to get a glimpse of how it might be to work in a bank. Through Mentor, our employees are given the opportunity to make a contribution to society, while developing themselves and their own leadership.

Setting goals for the future

We engage in local communities, such as around our offices in Rissne, outside Stockholm. SEB is here one of the biggest employers and many of our employees are engaged and serve as role models. Since 2013, SEB has organized the contest Dream Challenge in various schools around Stockholm together with the organization A Million Minds with the aim to encourage students to set up goals for the future. The programme has engaged 650 students over the three years and around 150 students during 2015.

In the Baltic countries SEB contributes to children and youth in need of extra support. SEB Charity Fund is among the largest charity foundation in Estonia with over 7,000 regular donors that are able to help more than 1,000 children from shelters and foster families. In Latvia, SEB partners with the SOS Children Villages that provide support for young people and engage both employees and customers in volunteering and ­donations. In Lithuania, SEB is main supporter of the largest nationwide fundraising campaign “Dreams Come True” in order to raise money and provide support for ill children.

Promotion of music and learning

Since 2005, SEB supports the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in Stockholm and Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra. In 2014, we extended our partnership to also include support for the school orchestra concept El Sistema. This worldwide movement started in Venezuela in 1975 by conductor José Antonio Abreu. El Sistema is now spread all over the world, including Sweden, and has proven to be a successful method, not only to train young musicians, but also to combat exclusion and drug abuse. El Sistema also promotes good leadership and entrepreneurship. 

In June 2015 in Gothenburg, SEB contributed to the international  the music festival “Side-by-Side by El Sistema” where 3,000 children and young people gathered to play, sing and dance.

SEB and the Stockholm Concert Hall have also developed Konserthuset Play, a web portal with recorded concerts with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and educational films about music instruments for children and youths. The aim is to make the concerts more accessible and inspire to music and learning.

Education and know-how

In SEB we actively support research, education and innovation. We engage in several programmes with universities, both by contributing to professorships and research projects and by partnerships for students in Sweden, around the Nordics and the Baltics. In Latvia, we support and cooperate with Stockholm School of Economics SSE Riga and SSE Riga Sustainable Business Centre where we are involved in the production of the Shadow Economy Index and the Retirement Readiness Index. We have granted scholarships to 25 students in Latvia for the school year 2015/2016, through our partnerships with the social rehabilitation NGO’s “Livslust”and the Vītols Fund. In Sweden, SEB engaged in World Values day, a meeting point where students and professionals built values and self-awareness.