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OUR ETHICS

We are committed to making ellesse products with consideration and respect for people and the environment. Every member of our team has a role to play in helping us be responsible.

We prioritise four key areas:

Ethical trade : assessing our supply chain to improve conditions for workers worldwide

Product : looking at ways to reduce the environmental impacts associated with the materials and processes used to make our products and packaging

Environment : reducing the environmental footprint of our head office

Community : supporting local communities and charities.

Our efforts are guided by our Business Standards Policies

Code of Business Conduct: makes clear our expected standards of behaviour towards employees, customers, suppliers and the wider community

Employment Standards Policy: sets out our commitment to respect and protect the health, safety and rights at work of our employees and our suppliers’ employees

Code of Employment Standards for Suppliers: specifies our expectations for business partners’ treatment of the workers who make our products, and is consistent with the Ethical Trading Initiative’s Base Code

Environmental Policy: states our position on minimising the environmental impacts of our products and operations, while safeguarding the health and safety of our employees and the public.

 

For enquiries about Corporate Responsibility at ellesse, please contact cr@ellesse.com.

ETHICAL TRADE

ellesse products are sourced from suppliers globally. The majority of our suppliers’ factories are in Asia, with the remainder in Europe and Latin America. These factories employ thousands of people, and we are committed to improving working conditions for the people that make our products.

We recognise that there are complex ethical issues within our supply chain. We limit our impact and risk by setting robust standards, selecting partners carefully and working with them to continually improve performance.

Our standards for suppliers

Our policy is to only do business with suppliers that adopt and implement our standards, or have policies that reflect the same values. We require partners to comply with our Code of Employment Standards for Suppliers, as well as all relevant local legislation.

Our Code reflects globally recognised labour standards, including those of the International Labour Organization and the Ethical Trading Initiative’s Base Code. It specifies that:

Workers should receive a living wage

Workers should have fair working hours

Workers should have regular employment

Working conditions should be safe and hygienic

There should be no discrimination, or harsh or inhumane treatment

No child labour should be used

Employment should be freely chosen

Workers should have the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining

Assessing and improving performance

All factories authorised to produce ellesse products must be assessed against our standards before production begins. We then monitor suppliers’ performance through regular follow up visits that provide a clear picture of working conditions and progress.

Where assessments identify room for improvement we work with suppliers to make positive changes, for example by sharing best practice, providing resources and training, and linking them with appropriate local organisations. In most cases, we will only terminate the relationship if factory management refuses to collaborate on performance improvement.

We have developed a series of tools that provide our business partners with information about our commitment to ethical trade and their essential role in this assessment and improvement process.

PRODUCT

Making any product has an impact on the environment. The extent of this impact depends on the materials used to make the product, the way it is made, its journey from factory to consumer, and the way it is disposed of when no longer wanted.

We are taking steps to reduce our impacts in these areas. Our activities include:

Restricted substances

Our intention is that consumers, workers and the environment are not exposed to harmful chemicals through the manufacture or use of ellesse products.

We give our designers and business partners the guidance they need to avoid the use of any potentially harmful substances. We provide them with our restricted substances policy, standards and guidelines, which we update regularly.

Compliance with our restricted substances policy and relevant laws and regulations is a condition of business with our suppliers.

Product packaging

We consider the environment when we source packaging. ellesse policy requires that:

All shoeboxes, tissue paper and hangtags contain a minimum of 50% recycled content and are 100% recyclable

Shoebox design allows for construction without the use of glue

The plastic bags that protect our apparel during shipping are made from recycled materials where possible.

ENVIRONMENT

Our office’s environmental footprint is relatively low, but we still take steps to reduce it further. Our priorities are to use less energy, to recycle more, and to use water and other natural resources responsibly.

Environmental features and activities at our London head office include:

Energy

The structure of our office building is designed to reduce the amount of artificial light needed, while avoiding overheating from sunlight. It uses natural ventilation in parallel with, and to reduce the need for, air conditioning. Hot water and heating come from energy efficient boilers.

Waste

We promote recycling and have centralised waste bins that help employees to quickly and easily segregate paper, cardboard and plastics. We ask people to remove general waste bins from alongside their desks.

We also separately collect wood, metal, electronic waste, and photocopier and printer toner cartridges. Where possible, we donate surplus product to charity.

Natural resources

Measures to reduce our water use include using mains-fed water dispensers instead of bottled water, and using rainwater to water grassy landscaped areas.

We also try to use other natural resources responsibly, and factor this into our procurement decisions. For example, our regular A4 printer paper stock is certified as sustainable by the Forest Stewardship Council, and we encourage employees to “think before they print”.

Our on-site restaurant sells Rainforest Alliance certified tea and coffee, Fairtrade bananas and sugar, and sustainably sourced fish. It also reduces food miles by using British beef, milk and eggs.

COMMUNITY

Our efforts to contribute to our local communities range from donating product to fundraising for charity.

Key partnerships include:

In Kind Direct

We donate new, surplus ellesse clothing and footwear to charity through the organisation In Kind Direct, established by HRH The Prince of Wales in 1996. This partnership supports UK charities working at home and abroad by providing them with goods they need at no cost, and it also has environmental benefits as it prevents this excess stock from going to landfill.

Save The Children

In 2011, ellesse supported the Save The Children Tennis Tournaments, held throughout the UK to raise money to help children worldwide. As official clothing provider, ellesse donated 1,000 polo shirts which were presented as prizes to the lucky winners of the tournaments.

Save the Children works in 120 countries. Its work focuses on saving children’s lives, protecting their rights, and helping them fulfil their potential.

The Tennis Ball

Founded in 2009 by a group of friends from the All England Lawn Tennis Club, The Tennis Ball raises funds for two charitable initiatives that aim to improve the lives of disadvantaged young people through tennis: Give It Your Max in the UK, and the International Lawn Tennis Club’s overseas development programme.

We have supported The Tennis Ball by donating ellesse products for their fundraising auctions.

Give It Your Max

Founded in memory of 18-year-old Max Stotesbury, Give It Your Max aims to improve the lives of young people from disadvantaged or underprivileged backgrounds by providing tennis instruction in schools and local clubs. Since 2004, almost 100,000 children aged 5-11 years have been introduced to tennis through its programmes.

In 2012, ellesse supported the Give It Your Max charity golf day at Royal St George’s Golf Club in Sandwich by sponsoring one of the 18 golf holes.