Our approach to sustainability

We’ve been working towards business excellence for many years and in so doing we’ve formalized our approach to sustainability, integrating it into our management systems and structures to help improve our performance as a responsible company.

Our values

The way we approach and manage sustainability is closely aligned to our values. Over the years, our three core commitments to customers, employees and innovation have created a robust ethical framework which underpins all our sustainability activities.

Managing Sustainability

As a company that has always pursued “business performance excellence”, Gemalto has a strong background in many aspects of sustainability. We’ve continually challenged our own practices through external evaluations and certifications. We’ve benchmarked our performance against best-in-class companies and have always worked to meet expectations of corporate citizenship from our key stakeholders.

A few years ago, we decided to combine our numerous corporate responsibility initiatives within a coordinated framework. At this point, our Board intensified its involvement in Gemalto’s sustainability performance and reporting, and we took a more systematic approach to managing sustainability within the company. (For information on our Governance structure, see our 'Corporate Governance' section.)

Our first priority was to set up a combined, formal sustainability management system. In 2009, we created a multidisciplinary Sustainable Development Steering Committee, supervised by three Executive Vice-Presidents: Human Resources, Marketing and General Counsel. This committee meets at least once a year to review our sustainability improvement strategy. We also set up two sub-commissions, Ecology and Social & Ethics, which meet every two months to review our sustainability projects.

In particular, the sub-commissions focus on:

In September 2009, we signed up to the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), benchmarking our policies and results with world-class standards, and verifying the alignment of our current practices with the Compact’s ten principles on human rights, labor rights, anti-corruption and the environment. Also, we recently upgraded our Corporate Policy on Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) to a Sustainable Development Policy, which reflects the scope of our commitments in this area. Our first Communication of Progress (COP) to the UN was sent in September 2010.


In our approach to sustainability, we aim to tackle the issues that matter most to Gemalto and our stakeholders. Based on our experience and knowledge, and taking into account requests from our customers and other stakeholders, as well as evolving HSE regulations, we have historically addressed critical issues such as:

In 2009, we introduced new programs in the areas of People Care and Responsible Purchasing. We also began to define and implement a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) dashboard to help us monitor our CSR performance and progress.

Our global Enterprise Risk Assessment encompassed several sustainability issues and helped us map and mitigate key risks. Our next step is to conduct a dedicated sustainability risk analysis for the Company as a whole. This will enable us to better identify and prioritize the issues we engage with in the future.

Stakeholder dialogue

We communicate regularly with our key stakeholders, and invite their views on our performance. Whether they are customers, suppliers, employees, investors or local communities, our stakeholders’ opinions are of great importance to us.

This view certainly underpins our approach to our investors. The confidence and loyalty of private and institutional shareholders are essential to our successful long-term development. Our investor relations policy is therefore aimed at informing shareholders in a timely and detailed way about developments that are relevant to Gemalto.

In addition to the shareholders’ Annual General Meetings (AGM), we have implemented a wide variety of communication tools to keep investors informed on a regular basis, and to encourage their feedback. At the publication of interim and annual financial statements, we hold conference calls and investor meetings. In addition, we regularly hold road shows and participate in conferences for institutional investors. All these contacts help us to get a clear picture of investors’ and analysts’ opinions (see 'Investor information').

Our annual “Tell Me” survey, meanwhile, enables us to assess levels of customer satisfaction. It also allows us to answer queries from customers who want to maintain certain corporate responsibility standards throughout their own supply chains.

Another key opportunity for customer dialogue on sustainability comes at the point of tender. During this process, as we answer questions put to us by customers, we are able to describe in detail our main management systems and practices. When requested, we also complete customer-specific questionnaires demonstrating how we can meet expectations for sustainable products and services.

For our biggest suppliers, we hold Quarterly Business Review meetings where we discuss commercial and technical issues relating to the supply chain, product quality and our mutual relationship. In 2009, we also asked our suppliers for direct feedback on our procurement practices.

We also regularly engage with people from the areas where we operate. These communications are conducted at a local level and can address issues such as noise pollution and people transport. For greatest efficiency, they are managed on a site-by-site basis.

Internally, our annual employee survey, PeopleQuest, helps us to track employee satisfaction across our global operations.

Employee engagement

It is essential to us that sustainability is at the core of our Company. We expect our employees to understand, embody and uphold our commitments and beliefs. In 2009 we revisited our Code of Ethics, upgrading some of the rules that govern the conduct of our operations worldwide and strengthening the high ethical standards to which we aspire as a business. By the end of the year, 98.7% of targeted employees (more than 2,500) had read and signed this Code, confirming a strong level of engagement at all levels.

We also communicate regularly with our employees about sustainability at Gemalto. We deliver information via established internal communications channels, and every year we disseminate our HSE and Sustainable Development Strategic Agenda. Last year, our commitment to support the UNGC, and our new sustainability projects and management structure, were communicated to all of our 10,000 + employees. We also introduced staff training on specific key issues such as fraud and launched a bi-monthly newsletter on internal control and risk management matters.

Since 2008, we’ve been holding an annual Gemalto Sustainable Development Day – with events held in all our sites worldwide which serve to update and engage our staff with our sustainability actions. And as of June 2010, we now have a dedicated CSR intranet. This site provides articles and information on sustainability topics, and serves as a key communication platform for our employees.

Full details of Gemalto’s policies and performance with regard to Sustainability can be found in its Sustainability Report on www.gemalto.com