2. Strategy and Analysis
GRI 102-14 CEO statement on sustainability
For the statement of Christian Buhl (CEO), see CEO statement on sustainability.
GRI 102-15 Key impacts, risks and opportunities
For Geberit, sustainability means bringing about a sustained improvement in the quality of people’s lives through innovative sanitary products and thereby generating long-term added value for customers, society and investors. This means striking a balance in decision-making processes between economic, environmental and social aspects. One focal point of Geberit involves identifying important technological and social trends in good time in dialogue with stakeholders and developing suitable products and services for customers that also generate added value for other stakeholders. The long-term orientation minimises risks for business development that are not only of a purely financial nature but arise from social developments and environmental challenges, such as climate change and water scarcity. Geberit has a long commitment to sustainability and has thus followed a long-term environmental and sustainability strategy since 1990 that includes both ongoing and future projects, initiatives and activities. Each module in the strategy contains clear responsibilities with measurable objectives, derived measures and quantifiable key figures for effective monitoring. It thus sets standards for customers, employees, suppliers and other partners. Various awards and rankings serve to confirm Geberit’s role as a leader in sustainability in various stakeholder groups’ perceptions. As a supplier, Geberit attained Gold status for sustainable supply chains on the EcoVadis platform.
Supplementary to the established Sustainability strategy, the Materiality analysis – which is based on the GRI Standards – prioritises the key topics for Geberit and simultaneously highlights the areas in which added value for stakeholders is created. These are as follows: resource-efficient and sustainable systems for water management in buildings, water-saving and sustainable products, environmentally friendly and resource-efficient production, procurement and logistics in compliance with high environmental and ethical standards as well as good and safe working conditions for the 11,619 employees worldwide. Social responsibility is realised among other things within the scope of global social projects relating to the core competencies of water and sanitary facilities, and is intensified with long-term partnerships such as with the Swiss development organisation Helvetas.
The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) define concrete targets for 17 different themes, which the states are required to implement by 2030. Integration of the economy plays a pivotal role in implementing these targets and indicators. As a result, major opportunities with growth potential are also arising for companies geared towards sustainable products and services – such as Geberit. In accordance with the external Stakeholder Panel, which was conducted for the fourth time in September 2018, Geberit sees its contribution above all in four UN Sustainable Development Goals. The contributions to goal number 6 “Ensure the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”, number 8 “Promote sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all”, number 9 “Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialisation and foster innovation” and number 11 “Make cities safe, resilient and sustainable” are included in the SDG Reporting from Geberit. The major economic, environmental and social effects of Geberit’s operations also lie in these four areas.
Geberit combats risks posed by increasing regulation and changing framework conditions with an effective compliance system that focuses on compliance in the six key topic areas of antitrust legislation, corruption, product liability, data protection, employee rights and environmental protection.