13 Rue de la Paix Paris, 75002 France
- #56 World’s Most Valuable Brands 2020
CHIEF SUSTAINABILITY OFFICER
Report created by Cec Ehrhard
Cartier is a french brand that is a part of the luxury conglomerate Richemont. Carrier was founded in 1847 by Louis-Franciu Cartier. The company has become one of the most luxurious brands, and at one time it was sold to kings and queens of Great Britain in the early nineteen hundreds.
Mainly manufacturing and selling jewelry and watches, there are more than 200 Cartier stores worldwide. The World Wide Fund for Nature rated the top fifteen watch and jewelry brands in Switzerland; Cartier was ranked number two out of fifteen in addressing environmental and climate change issues.
Company Sustainability Activity
Cartier’s sustainability activity is highlighted by their parent company, Richemont:
“Richemont’s Transformational Strategy was launched in 2019. It reflects their aspiration for ‘Better Luxury’: improving the way luxury is created in a more sustainable and responsible way and helping to create.”
The following sections are based on Richemont’s sustainability initiatives and report.
- Decreased Richemont’s carbon footprint from buildings by 6% during the year. The percentage of renewable electricity used increased to 64% for the year (prior year 60%).
- Richemont has committed to implement renewable energy systems at 50% of Richemont’s manufacturing and other key sites over the next three years.
The following section is based on Cartier’s parent company, Richemont’s sustainability targets.
- 100% renewable electricity by 2025
The following section is based on Cartier’s parent company, Richemont’s sustainability progress.
Materials & Sourcing
- Richemont seeks to reduce environmental impacts in Richemont’s supply chain and sourcing recycled, RJC- certified gold is Richemont’s preferred option
- Recycled gold has the lowest impact on biodiversity as neither land disturbance nor heavy trucks and plant are associated with re-processing
- Currently, Richemont sources 100% recycled gold, which is primarily derived from old jewellery, industrial plating processes and manufacturing scraps
- Many of Richemont’s Maisons use American alligator leather for making watch straps. The alligator farming methods, including animal welfare certification, has helped to return the species’ population to safe levels in recent decades
- Farmers conserve the biotopes on which 8,000 species depend, including the alligators
- Louisiana wetland biotopes are critical for climate change mitigation as they sequester a significant amount of carbon
- These observations regarding biodiversity preservation and carbon sequestration have encouraged Richemont Maison’s efforts to source American alligator leather
Environmental Management Systems
- ISO 14001 is the most widely used EMS standard and Richemont will align their own efforts with that standard. Actual certification against the standard will be a choice at the discretion of each site manager and work has already started at a number of sites
- Some ten boutiques have been certified using BREEAM and LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)
- Cartier’s One Peking Road boutique in Hong Kong SAR, China, which received GOLD LEED certification. As the Group has committed to 10% of all new buildings and refurbishments being certified each year by 2025, many more boutiques will be added
- Richemont’s carbon footprint from buildings decreased by 6% during the year.
- The percentage of renewable electricity used increased to 64% for the year (prior year 60%).
- This progressive increase, from a base of just 23% in 2012, reflects two initiatives:
- Local actions to switch to renewable energy options provided by local utilities
- A global project to fill the gaps where local utilities cannot provide that option. The global project entails the purchase of Renewable Energy Certificates via the RECS system.
- Consequently, Richemont’s carbon footprint linked to electricity consumption is falling year on year.”
- Richemont’s most recent CDP rating for Climate/Carbon was ‘B’, implying that strong climate management measures are in place.
UN Sustainable Development Goals
UN SDGs Compliance
All SDG information taken from parent company Richemont
The following section aligns current company-wide sustainability initiatives with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
- Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic and public life
- Richemont’s targets to promote diversity and inclusion and their progress to date are described in the People chapter:
- Richemont has expanded its benefits programme for childcare services, including parental leave
- In Richemont’s supply chain, Richemont promotes equal remuneration for women and men, equal opportunities and diversity through certification schemes such as the Responsible Jewellery Council
- Access to basic services such as water & sanitation, education, health and nutrition; women’s social and economic development; sustainable livelihoods and ecosystems; and emergency response and preparedness
- Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification, technological upgrading and innovation, including through a focus on high-value added and labour-intensive sectors
- Improve progressively global resource efficiency in consumption and production and endeavor to decouple economic growth from environmental degradation
- Richemont’s targets regarding occupational health, safety and well-being are described in the People chapter.
- Richemont’s policies to safeguard human rights and labour standards in the supply chain and the positive social impact Richemont makes are described in the Sourcing chapter.
- Implementing transparency and traceability in raw material sourcing, particularly materials which have positive biodiversity and environmental impacts such as American alligator leather, is included in the Environment chapter.
- Achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources
- Substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse
- Encourage transnational companies to adopt sustainable practices and to integrate sustainability information into their reporting cycle
- Richemont’s long-term goals include the crafting of fully sustainable business models based on circular economy principles.
- Richemont has taken first steps with the international expansion of a specialist pre- owned watch business.
- In the meantime, Richemont is primarily using recycled gold in Richemont’s new watches and jewellery pieces to minimise Richemont’s environmental impacts and are reviewing all aspects of product packaging to minimise waste in the production and consumption phases.
- IWC Schaffhausen’s alternative packaging project, which offers customers smaller, lighter ways to travel with new watches.
- Richemont has committed to establish Science-Based Targets in line with the Paris Agreement.
- The targets will be set in the year ahead for Scope 1, 2 and 3.
- Committed to lower Richemont’s carbon emissions from business travel and to source 100% renewable electricity by 2025. Details of those commitments and Richemont’s current emissions data may be found in the Environment chapter.
- Partnership with the Laureus Sports for Good Foundation
Secondary SDGs: 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 14, 15, 16
Cartier does not provide any reporting for sustainability beyond their Corporate Responsibility report. The company relies on their parent company, Richemont, for their sustainability initiatives and strategies.
In jewelry and watchmaking, there is manufacturing and sourcing concerns that center around deforestation, pollution and forced labor.
For instance, Richemont admits, “exotic skins and precious stones are a priority for the Group. Historically, for the luxury goods industry, there have been issues surrounding the sourcing of gold and diamonds and coloured gemstones, which include social & human rights as well as environmental issues, as these are often mined in regions affected by conflict or instability. The social and environmental impact of the goods and services Richemont buys often lies outside our direct control.”
Richemont has targets focused to use 100% renewable energy by 2025 as well as goals to reducing material/packaging waste. Richemont has a few certifications, one listing, and zero awards. Cartier also relies on their parent company for all sustainable information and reports. Cartier has been given a “C” rating
Analyst Outlook: Negative
To become sustainable Richemont and Cartier should be in complete control of their supply chains and be transparent with their manufacturing. Richemont has made progress in terms of climate reform. The company has not made any clear cut highlights in sustainability or climate change. Therefore the outlook is negative.
- Cartier should create their own CSR reports instead of relying on parent company for information
- Make information about sourcing materials transparent:
- “The social and environmental impact of the goods and services Richemont buys often lies outside Richemont’s direct control” is an extremely poor excuse for not having the information available to the public
- No awards, one listing, one target