Actively managing sustainability
In line with METRO AG’s strategy, sustainability is systematically and organisationally entrenched in the core business. Sustainability management takes into account interdependencies between economic, environmental and social aspects in an efficient, solution-oriented manner and involves the Management Board. On the one hand, this is done through the work of the Sustainability Committee, on the other hand, for example by linking remuneration of the Management Board and the global senior management to the assessment of METRO’s sustainability performance in the rating of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI).
As the highest sustainability body in the company, the Sustainability Committee provides the strategic framework and group-wide goals and facilitates the exchange of information on sustainability issues at the highest management level – sometimes also with external input from guest speakers. To adequately respond to the specific market and customer requirements, the METRO companies manage the operational implementation of overarching sustainable development goals within this framework. They are responsible for working on the relevant sustainability issues, for defining and implementing specific targets and measures and for monitoring their success. The committee is chaired by 2 representatives from the top management, who are regularly rotated. Other members of the committee are:
- People in charge of corporate responsibility at METRO AG
- Representatives of the core functions purchasing, communications and energy management, investments & technical solutions
- Representatives of the METRO national subsidiaries
Sustainability management is closely linked to our opportunity and risk management through formalised reporting and assessment of sustainability-related opportunities and risks. This enables the Management Board to systematically identify, evaluate and control deviations from the sustainability goals and the associated opportunities and risks. In accordance with § 289c Section 3 Sentence 1 Nos. 3 and 4 of the German Commercial Code (HGB), there are no reportable risks for financial year 2019/20.
Our stakeholders evaluate all sustainability measures implemented, for example through ratings. These assessments by independent third parties show us progress and potential for improvement in our actions and are thus an important motivation and management tool for us.
ISS ESG (Institutional Shareholder Services – Environmental, Social, Governance: formerly ISS-oekom) awarded the Prime Status C+ (on a scale from D- to A+) to METRO in April 2020 again to recognise them as a leader in the industry sector. In financial year 2019/20, we were once again listed in the Food & Staples Retailing group in the internationally important Dow Jones Sustainability Index World and Europe. In 2020, METRO was again listed in the FTSE4Good index. For CDP Climate Change and Water, METRO achieved a rating of B (scale F to A) in 2019 and is thus above the industry average. In 2019, METRO participated in the CDP Forests project for the first time and earned a rating of B- (palm oil, soya, paper) and D (meat). METRO shares are also included in the MSCI World ESG Leaders Index and its European counterpart.