Smurfit Kappa in top 1% of Ecovadis’ worldwide sustainability ratings for supply chains
Smurfit Kappa has been awarded the gold Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) rating by EcoVadis, a leading evaluator of global supply chains, for the fourth successive year.
The company ranked among the top 1% of the 30,000 companies that were assessed on a range of criteria across environment, labour practices and human rights, sustainable procurement and fair business practices.
EcoVadis provides supplier sustainability ratings for global supply chains in companies such as BASF, Johnson & Johnson, Nestlé, Renault and Veolia.
This achievement follows on from Smurfit Kappa reaching a sustainability target earlier in the year when it reached full chain of custody certification for its entire raw material supply chain, helping its customers to meet their own sustainability and environmental targets.
Smurfit Kappa CEO of Europe, Saverio Mayer, said: “At Smurfit Kappa, we firmly believe that we must support our customers in achieving their sustainability goals and protecting their reputation.
“The independent external recognition of the EcoVadis gold rating demonstrates this commitment.
“Supplier choice is often governed by who the most responsible business partner is. Our customers can rest assured that with Smurfit Kappa, they benefit from a completely transparent and sustainable supply chain.”
The EcoVadis methodology is built on international CSR standards including the Global Reporting Initiative, the United Nations Global Compact, and the ISO 26000, covering 150 purchasing categories and 140 countries.
Pandora and IBM digitise jewellery supply chain
Pandora has overhauled its global supply chain in partnership with IBM amid an ecommerce sales boom for its hand-finished jewellery.
The company found international success offering customisable charm bracelets and other personalised jewellery though its chain of bricks and mortar retail destinations. But in 2020, as the COVID-19 outbreak forced physical stores to close, Pandora strengthened its omnichannel operations and doubled online sales.
A focus on customer experience included deploying IBM’s Sterling Order Management, increasing supply chain resiliency and safeguarding against disruption across the global value chain.
Pandora leverages IBM Sterling Order Management as the backbone it its omnichannel fulfilment, with Salesforce Commerce Cloud powering its ecommerce. Greater automation across its channels has boosted the jeweller’s sustainability credentials, IBM said, streamlining processes for more efficient delivery. It has also given in-store staff and virtual customer service representatives superior end-to-end visibility to better meet consumer needs.
Jim Cruickshank, VP of Digital Development & Retail Technology, Pandora, said the digital transformation journey has brought “digital and store technology closer together and closer to the customer”, highlighting how important the customer journey remains, even during unprecedented disruption.
"Our mission is about creating a personal experience and we've instituted massive platform changes with IBM Sterling and Salesforce to enable new digital-first capabilities that are much more individualised, localised and connected across channels and markets,” he added.
Pandora’s pivot to digital
The pandemic forced the doors closed at most of Pandora’s 2,700 retail locations. To remain competitive, it pivoted to online retail. Virtual queuing for stores and virtual product trials via augmented reality (AR) technology went someway to emulating the in-store experience and retail theatre that is the brand’s hallmark. Meanwhile digital investments in supply chain efficiency was central to delivering on consumer demand.
“Consumer behaviour has significantly shifted and will continue to evolve with businesses needing to quickly adapt to new preferences and needs,” said Kareem Yusuf, General Manager, AI Applications and Blockchain, IBM. “To address this shift, leading retailers like Pandora rely on innovation to increase their business agility by enabling and scaling sustainable supply chain operations using AI and cloud.”
Yusuf said Pandora’s success was indicative of how to remain competitive by “finding new ways to create differentiated customer experiences that protect their enterprises from disruptions to help mitigate risk and accelerate growth”.