Massive investments dominate the VELUX Group's 2012 CR report
Despite the financial crisis, 2012 was the year when the VELUX Group launched two new products that represent the largest investment in the Group's 70-year history. This is one of the messages in the Group's recently-published Corporate Responsibility report.
After an intensive development programme, the VELUX Group is busily engaged in the roll-out of two major new product platforms. The first is the New Generation of the well-known roof window; the second is the brand new skylight concept for public and commercialbuildings, a product that heralds the Group's venture into a completely new market.
Both products put energy efficiency, daylight and ventilation – and thereby a healthy indoor climate – at the centre. Together, the two projects represent an investment of 225 million Euro, the largest investment ever in the Group's 70-year history. These huge investments were made to ensure future growth but have had repercussions for a number of other activities. We did not meet our 2012 targets for reducing CO2 emissions and accidents at work, but that does not change the Group's long-term goal in either area. These goals are still very valid, says the report.
"Our investments in 2012 will safeguard our future and ensure our position as market leader. It is no secret that the volatile global economy and uncertainty in the building sector are challenges. So our strategic focus is on our core business and on giving the most effective launch for our two new flagships. In a difficult market, we have to prioritise what creates most value for business here and now, and put off until later what can wait," says CEO Jørgen Tang-Jensen.
"The world is facing daunting challenges with global warming; that is our challenge too. As a Model Company, we must play our part in being of use to society and, at the end of the day, the planet. And our products must help create attractive homes with lower energy consumption that help provide a solution to that problem," says Jørgen Tang-Jensen.
The way to halving CO2 emissions
The massive investments in product development and new production apparatus have necessitated a cut-back in investments in other areas. That has had consequences for our work in reducing CO2 emissions, much of which has been put on hold. The result is that our goal of cutting CO2 emissions by 20% by the end of 2012 was not met. The VELUX Group's CR report shows that the actual reduction was 13%, compared to the reference year of 2007.
"Despite the postponement of investments, we stick to our ambitious 2020 target of halving our 2007 CO2 emissions. The new production apparatus we have invested in is more environment friendly. So that alone is a good indication that we will see a cut in our emissions. And we will reinstate our CO2 reduction plans. So we are confident we will reach our objective," says Group Director David P. Meyer.
Since 2009, when its climate strategy was implemented, the VELUX Group has invested 12 million Euro in CO2 reduction. Further investments will be made in the near future to ensure we reach our 2020 target.
Safety programme will ensure zero accidents
The new production apparatus has resulted in many new installations and the removal of equipment from our factories. This is reflected in an increase in accidents at work. In 2012, there was an average of 3.9 accidents per million working hours, compared with 2.8 in 2011.
"That is a regrettable increase. And we are far from happy about it. But we expect to be back on track by the end of this year. At the end of 2013, we will conclude our three-year VELUX Safety Excellence programme, which is founded on the conviction that all accidents at work can be avoided and sets our ultimate goal of zero accidents. Our target for 2013 is for the figure to fall below 1.75, that is almost half that of the previous year," says Group Director David P. Meyer.
Read more about the VELUX Group's Corporate Responsibility Report 2012, Building a Model Company, at http://cr2012.velux.com/