La maroquinerie-ganterie Hermès à Saint-Junien

Socially responsible business

“In the face of the health crisis in 2020, Hermès reinforced its role as a socially responsible group, supporting its employees, partners and suppliers, as well as the public.”

Axel Dumas, Executive Chairman of Hermès 

Ambition

Sustainable development at Hermès stems from a humanistic vision and is rooted in harmonious long-term relationships with its employees and shareholders and, more broadly, with its stakeholders. Hermès has a role as a corporate citizen in the places where it operates, contributing to the economic, social and cultural vitality of these regions. This ambition is accompanied by a highly humanistic desire to give back to the world some of what it has been given.

Organisation

The strategy for responsibility towards the regions where Hermès operates, in particular concerning the choice of locations and development activities, is supervised by the executive Committee. In addition, each executive vice-president for its activities is responsible for implementing actions which have a positive impact on society in their area. A committee, led by a member of the executive Committee and the president of the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès, oversees and coordinates all of the maison’s initiatives to make a positive impact on society.

Commitments

As a committed and responsible group, Hermès is vocal about its desire to help make the world a better place thanks to numerous local, national and international initiatives and partnerships. The aim of these activities is to support economic activity and bring benefits to the local community, whether they be social, fiscal, environmental or cultural.

  • To give back to the world some of what Hermès has been given, through generous acts of financial support and skills development undertaken by the group’s entities, including its distribution subsidiaries, and through the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès.
  • To contribute to reflection on civil society and academic research by taking part in multi-stakeholder initiatives.
  • To participate in advocacy for alternative modes of production: handicrafts, lower intensity agriculture, local roots.

Responsible initiatives

In the face of the global health crisis caused by Covid-19, all the group’s entities and employees worldwide mobilised to help and support local stakeholders impacted by the pandemic. These actions took a variety of forms and included financial donations, making and donating hand sanitisers and making protective masks.

Since 2012, Hermès has been a partner of the Livelihoods Carbon Funds (LCF), which aim to sustainably improve the living conditions of disadvantaged communities by developing large-scale projects that have a real impact on climate change (www.livelihoods.eu).

Created in 2008, the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès shares the group’s humanist values and social and environmental commitments. It has become a major player in patronage in France in the fields of education, the performing arts, biodiversity and solidarity, guided by the conviction that “our acts define us”. The Fondation d’entreprise Hermès supports projects considered to be in the interests of the general public, which contribute, in a variety of different ways, to the development of communities and the preservation of natural ecosystems. It is committed to working with different partners with recognised expertise (national education, arts institutions, etc.) to implement nine long-term programmes based on four themes: transmitting, creating, protecting and encouraging.

Local roots

  • 51

    production sites in France, located in 9 of the 13 French regions

  • 62%

    of the group’s employees is in France (2,922 new employees over the past five years)

  • 80%

    of objects are made in France (including 100% of leather goods)

Long-term relationships

Hermès maintains special relationships with leading schools (Sciences Po Paris, HEC, ESSEC, Design Fashion Luxury, etc.) and secondary schools and colleges specialising in vocational qualifications, for example in leather goods: Jean Rostand (Angoulême), Boismard (Brionne), Boudard (Montbéliard), Jean Monnet (Paris), Charles Dupuy (Eysines) and Les Huisselets (Montbéliard).

In 2020, Hermès signed a partnership with Sciences Po Paris to participate in their chair for sustainable development and climate change, in particular to study in depth subjects related to local economic development and social inclusion.

The group has made a long-term commitment to using local fabrics as well as local suppliers and partners (56% of purchases are made in France and Hermès has worked with its main suppliers for an average of 20 years).

Solidarity actions

Solidarity actions

In 2020, more than 340 solidarity operations were carried out to help local communities around the world, including 100 related to Covid-19.

In April 2020, during the Covid-19 crisis, the group announced a €20M donation to the Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris public health establishment.

The €40M (2018-2023) budget for the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès is one of the largest (in relation to turnover) of any French corporate foundation (Carenews 2019 study).

1 million people impacted by Livelihoods projects worldwide.

Socially responsible business

During the Covid-19 crisis Hermès maintained jobs and basic salaries worldwide without recourse to government aid and supported suppliers (orders, payment deadlines, etc.).

€2.4 million in total purchases from socially supported organisations (EAs and ESATs).

In 2020, the group paid €613M in taxes, a tax rate of 31%.

An inspiring initiative

With manufacto, craftspeople are returning to school to share their métiers

Manufacto takes craftspeople back to school to share their crafts. Each year, they set off with their tools and rolls of leather to meet pupils aged 9 to 16 and their teachers. Dozens of craftspeople who work with leather, wood or plaster have wanted to go back to school to raise awareness of manual skills among the younger generation in Manufacto workshops. The workshops bear witness to the work that needs to be done to better communicate manual skills to young people in all levels of compulsory education. This programme, launched in 2016 by the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès with the Paris office for education, the Compagnons du Devoir, the Camondo school and the Villa Noailles, is now being rolled out by local education authorities in Paris, Créteil, Nice, Lyon and Besançon.

© Benoît Teillet

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