Give feedback via the email-form below.

Stakeholder engagement

Stakeholder engagement encompasses dialogue with a diverse range of partners and at all levels of the company.

Sustainable supply chain

Umicore’s commitment to its suppliers in terms of conduct and practices is outlined in the Sustainable Procurement Charter. In return Umicore requests that suppliers adhere to specific standards in terms of environmental stewardship, labour practices and human rights, business integrity and supply chain engagement.

Umicore’s Purchasing & Transportation function was selected as the most appropriate entity in Umicore to carry out the first phase of intensive and systematic application of the charter. This process provided experience and learning to help the business units in their application of the charter.

In the course of 2014, our regional procurement centres continued to select key suppliers based on criteria such as size, geographical location and type of product or service provided (including whether critical to the functioning of a Umicore entity).

The companies selected by the regional procurement centres included many suppiers of goods and services and some suppliers of raw materials (eg.metals). In total, 1,226 suppliers have now been selected, compared to 1,067 at the end of 2013. By the end of 2014, 83% of these 1,226 suppliers had formally acknowledged their adherence to the terms of the charter. The business units selected 429 suppliers, of which 73% had formally acknowledged their adherence to the terms of the charter by the end of 2014.

In 2014, Umicore asked Ecovadis to assess the sustainability performance of 100 of the 1,226 suppliers highlighted above. The selection of those suppliers by Umicore was based on the above mentioned risk assessment in relation to critical dependency, geographical presence and spend with these suppliers. The result of the assessment is a score card with an overall score and a score for each of the four sustainability categories: environment, labour, fair business practices and supply chain. The scores ranged from 1 to 100 with 1 representing a high risk regarding sustainability issues.

Of the 100 selected suppliers, 10 suppliers did not respond to the questionnaire. Of the 90 received score cards, 44 companies had a score between 25 and 44, meaning that they have taken basic steps on sustainability issues. Only one company had a score equal to 20, representing a high risk regarding sustainability issues. 42 companies scored, overall, between 45 and 64, meaning that they have “an appropriate sustainability management system” and 3 companies scored higher, showing advance practices on sustainability. As to the average score in each category, the suppliers attained the highest average score in environment, while scoring the lowest in promoting sustainability in their own supply chain.

The Umicore Group was assessed by Ecovadis and was scored 67, which classifies the company in the advanced category with a “structured and proactive CSR approach, engagements / policies and tangible actions on major issues with detailed implementation information and significant CSR reporting on actions & performance indicators”.

In 2014 the Purchasing & Transportation function further fine-tuned the above mentioned methodology for screening suppliers for sustainability and other criteria. This places more emphasis on a structured screening of all suppliers before they are accepted as business partners of Umicore.

Umicore conducted a survey of all business units as part of the annual business risk assessment (see here) to determine the level of adoption of the Sustainable Procurement Charter for direct procurement ie mainly metals. This survey indicated a varying level of adoption rates of the Sustainable Procurement Charter between business units.  In 2015 the focus will be on developing a better understanding of the sustainable procurement needs in those business units that have identified any specific sustainability risks within their metal supply chain.

In order to increase awareness of sustainable procurement within the company a web-based learning tool is available on the My Campus learning platform.

In 2012 the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a final rule on conflict minerals based on section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act. This rule obliges US stock listed companies to declare whether the tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold in their products have originated from the Democratic Republic of Congo or an adjoining country. While Umicore is not itself subject to the reporting requirements of Dodd-Frank, we use the above rulings as a guideline for our business. In this regard, our Precious Metals Refining operations in Hoboken and Guarulhos are certified as “conflict-free smelters” in 2014 for their operations of the previous year by the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA). The Jewellery & Industrial Metals operations in Pforzheim, Vienna and Bangkok are certified as part of the Responsible Jewellery Council’s (RJC) Chain of Custody programme until 2016. The sites in Guarulhos, Amsterdam, Pforzheim and Bangkok are also accredited by the LBMA as Good Delivery refiners. In 2014 the business unit also passed the audit for responsible platinum sourcing by the RJC. Both the RJC Chain of Custody and LBMA Good Delivery accreditations qualify the accredited sites for listing in the EICC (Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition) Conflict Free Smelter List.

In addition to existing policies and charters such as the Umicore Code of Conduct, Human Rights Policy and Sustainable Procurement Charter, Umicore also has a specific policy regarding “Responsible global supply chain of minerals from conflict-affected and high-risk areas”.