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Why Net Positive?

At Kingfisher we have a clear purpose - to create good homes by making home improvement accessible for everyone. We know that a good home is a sustainable home and we will go all out to help our customers have the good, sustainable homes they deserve.

Net positive is our sustainability ambition. It means innovating in our products and services to enable our customers to have more sustainable homes; transforming our business to have a restorative impact on the environment; and making a positive contribution to society and the communities in which we operate.

Our net positive aspirations for 2050 are:

  • Every Kingfisher product will enable a more sustainable and ultimately net positive lifestyle.
  • Every Kingfisher store and customer home is zero carbon or generates more energy than it consumes.
  • Kingfisher creates more forest than it uses.
  • Every Kingfisher store and location supports projects which build local communities or equip people with skills.

By becoming net positive we will grow our business so that our shareholders, customers, employees, suppliers and communities will all prosper. We reached our first set of net positive milestones in January 2017 and in 2018 we published our plan for sustainable growth - our next set of milestones up to 2025.

 

We want to become a truly sustainable company, offering our customers solutions for sustainable and good homes, and operating with a commitment to always do good business.

Véronique Laury
Chief Executive Officer

SUSTAINABILITY AND OUR CUSTOMERS

Few customers use the term ‘sustainability’, but there are many sustainability issues that connect with what customers really care about. As with every aspect of our One Kingfisher strategy, our approach to sustainability starts with truly understanding what matters to our customers. Over the last two years we have taken the time to gain a deeper understanding of their lives and their views on sustainability.

We carried out extensive research across five markets including in-depth interviews and visits to customer homes. We learned that, regardless of where they live, our customers are united by many shared hopes and concerns. Customers told us that:

  • Saving energy at home is a top priority;
  • They value long-lasting products and dislike waste;
  • They want to re-connect to nature
  • They are increasingly concerned about having a healthy and toxin-free home;
  • And they want to be part of a thriving community.

Our research re-emphasised that most people find making sustainable choices hard work. Often it feels too complicated or time consuming, particularly when they are grappling with an already complex home improvement project. Customers expect us to make it easy for them. Ideally they’d like to be able to buy sustainably without having to think about it. This is our ambition.

These insights have directly informed the big goals at the heart of our plan for sustainable growth. Read more about our research in the launch report for our sustainable growth plan 2017.

WHY DO WE NEED TO BE NET POSITIVE?

The world faces unprecedented social and environmental challenges. Unemployment and inequality undermine quality of life and wellbeing for millions of people and pose risks for the resilience of communities around the world. The impacts of water scarcity, climate change and a growing and ageing population are putting pressure on food supplies, natural resources and infrastructure, with the potential to disrupt supply chains and destabilise economies. Technology has created an age of transparency, enabling greater scrutiny of corporate behaviour and contributing to rising expectations of the role of business in society.

These global trends are changing the way our customers live, shop and work. Changing demographics, increasing demand for resources and accelerating urbanisation, mean that for many, housing is getting more expensive and smaller. In some countries, the population is ageing, there is a rise in single person households, and the cost of housing is increasing meaning that young people stay at home longer and homes are being used for living and working. People are feeling the impact of environmental changes, especially the scarcity of precious resources and the consequences of climate change. Technology is enabling people to run their homes smarter, using less energy and creating less waste, while trends such as the sharing economy, are revolutionising the retail landscape.

The successful companies of the future will be those who respond to these external trends positively, adapting their business to meet changing customer and societal needs with fewer resources.

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals provide an international framework for addressing many of these challenges and we aim to support these through our work on sustainability. We have identified the priority Goals for our business, where we can have the most impact. These include Goal 8 – Decent work and economic growth; Goal 11 – Sustainable cities; and Goal 12 – Responsible consumption and production.

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