One entity with many parts
The Geberit Group operated 30 plants in the reporting year, 24 of which are located in Europe, three in the US, two in China and one in India. The plants now fall into the following three categories depending on the materials used:
- Plastics & Metal
- Composites & Metal
The plant in Weilheim (DE) was closed at the end of 2018. An amicable solution was found with the plant’s 40 employees and the works council.
The “flowing” factory
All Geberit plants display an outstanding capability for renewal. Despite the variety of production technologies used, the approach is determined uniformly – both investments in property, plant and equipment and everyday improvement measures are consistently geared towards the principle of flow production. Maximum efficiency and flexibility targeted in this way, which is reflected in the reliable, timely supply of products to customers and savings in important resources such as working time and materials. The benchmarks of flow production are set out in the Geberit Production System (GPS 2.0). GPS 2.0 is viewed as a guideline for production in which the principles for process optimisation are presented.
Numerous measures pertaining to GPS 2.0 were initiated, promoted or brought to a conclusion in the reporting year. This enabled substantial efficiency gains to be achieved, particularly in the area of ceramics production. Prime examples of this are the ceramics plants in Gaeta (IT) and Limoges (FR), where productivity was increased significantly. The principles of GPS 2.0 also formed the basis of all investments made in the entire production network. In the reporting year, these comprised in particular the completion of factory buildings in Pfullendorf (DE), Langenfeld (DE) and Ozórkow (PL), as well as new buildings for logistics and technical product development in Slavuta (UA).
A capability for renewal requires all involved employees to display a willingness to embrace change. The alignment of processes in ceramics production to GPS 2.0 and broad acceptance of this transition was a significant success factor when integrating the ceramics business.
Standardisation of IT systems
The integration of the former Sanitec plants into the Geberit ERP environment continued in 2018. IT systems and processes are being adjusted to the Group standard in the “OneERP” project. As planned, the project was prepared in the reporting year and implemented successfully on 1 January 2019 at the Scandinavian production sites in Ekenäs (FI), Bromölla and Mörrum (both SE). At the same time, preparations were carried out for converting the German sites in Haldensleben, Wesel and the logistics in Ratingen-Lintorf in a further step.
Environmental management in production
The integration of the ceramics plants into the production network in 2015 had a considerable impact on Geberit’s ecological footprint. Because of the processes involved, the manufacture of ceramic sanitary appliances is very energy-intensive. One example of an important measure in 2018 within the framework of consistent energy management was the retrofitting of three further kilns to the energy-efficient firing technology Enervit. As a result, the ten ceramics plants now have eleven such kilns at their disposal.
The absolute environmental impact of the entire Geberit Group decreased by 4.4%, even though currency-adjusted sales increased by 3.1% in the same period. The environmental impact in relation to currency-adjusted sales (eco-efficiency) decreased by 7.3%. As regards the long-term target, which is based on an average annual decrease of 5% per year, Geberit therefore remains on course.
Environmental impact 2009–2018
* UBPs = Ecopoints in accordance with the Swiss Ecological Scarcity Method (upgraded version 2013)
Distribution environmental impact 2018
CO2 emissions were reduced in 2018 by 4.7% to 231,484 tonnes. In relation to currency-adjusted sales, emissions decreased by 7.5%. This enabled the targets set out in the long-term CO2 strategy for reducing CO2 emissions to be met. In addition to relative targets, this strategy also includes long-term absolute targets. A three-pillar model is used for implementing the CO2 strategy. The first pillar is about savings in energy consumption. The second pillar relates to increasing efficiency and the third pillar comprises the selective purchasing of high-quality, renewable energy. The detailed CO2 balance sheet and all measures taken to reduce CO2 emissions are also disclosed in detail as part of the company’s participation in the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP).
CO2 emissions 2009–2018
Geberit aims to further reinforce its position as industry leader in the area of sustainability. Eco-efficiency and relative CO2 emissions are to be improved by 5% per year (see also Sustainability Strategy 2019-2021). One of the main instruments that helps achieve this goal is the integrated Geberit management system, which unites the themes of quality, environment, health and occupational safety as well as energy. By the end of 2019, all ceramics plants are to be integrated into this system. At the end of the reporting year, all 30 production plants were already certified to ISO 14001 and 29 to OHSAS 18001. Certification according to ISO 50001 (energy management) is taking place for selected sites.