Paul, Maintenance Manager, Denton factory

Governance

Wienerberger has set out a clear approach for managing sustainability aspects and behaving as a responsible business. This includes establishing a formal structure for sustainability management and adopting an internationally recognised methodology to identify material Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues. Wienerberger sets clear guidelines for business ethics and conduct, and reports upon ESG performance annually.

Structure of sustainability management

Wienerberger Limited is a trading UK indirect subsidiary of Wienerberger AG (parent company of the Wienerberger Group with headquarters in Vienna, Austria). The sustainability responsibilities within the Wienerberger Group are clearly defined, with the Sustainability Steering Committee (SSC) setting out strategic management guidelines and promoting the sustainability plan. 

The Sustainability Steering Committee consists of the Managing Board of Wienerberger AG, the CEOs of each Business Unit and the Head of Corporate Sustainability of Wienerberger AG. Collectively, the Head of Corporate Sustainability and the CEOs of the Business Units develop the sustainability strategy and set binding targets, deadlines and action plans.

The CEOs of each Business Unit are responsible for achieving the sustainability targets in their business area. The Business Unit CEOs support regional and local management (including the Board of Directors of Wienerberger Limited) to implement the sustainability strategy.

In turn, the Board of Directors of Wienerberger Limited work with local sustainability experts to refine, develop and drive the implementation of the corporate sustainability strategy within the UK.

Information and data management

Information flows regarding sustainability are both top down and bottom up; the country-level sustainability experts share knowledge and insight with peers in their Business Unit, and with the Head of Corporate Sustainability, who reports to the CEO of Wienerberger AG.

The collection of data on sustainability and its processing falls under the remit of the CFO of Wienerberger AG and the CFOs of the Business Units. Wienerberger utilises a central data management system for all non-financial key figures called Non-Financial Group Reporting. Wienerberger Limited contributes sustainability performance data to the central data management system, where information is collated to inform strategic decision making and to report upon progress. The collated sustainability performance data is published annually in Wienerberger AG’s Sustainability Report/Update and the Non-Financial Performance Report.

Identifying material ESG issues

Wienerberger AG conducts materiality analyses to determine the focus points of Wienerberger’s sustainability strategy. For each core product range (bricks, plastic pipes, ceramic pipes and paving) environmental and social factors across each stage of the full lifecycle value chain are identified. These environmental and social factors form the basis of an online survey, which internal and external stakeholders are invited to complete. From the survey results, a materiality matrix is generated. This matrix effectively illustrates the relevance of each individual factor for our stakeholders.

The results of a materiality assessment conducted in 2014 informed the Wienerberger Sustainability Roadmap 2020, which set ambitious sustainability targets for highly relevant environmental and social factors.  Through the Sustainability Roadmap 2020, Wienerberger committed to the continuous improvement of our environmental, social, and economic performance. 

A second materiality analysis was undertaken to renew Wienerberger’s sustainability approach for 2021 and beyond. Wienerberger AG has communicated the key topics for its environmental sustainability agenda beyond 2020, these are: decarbonisation, biodiversity and the circular economy. The results of the updated materiality analysis and the detailed contents of Wienerberger’s new sustainability strategy will be published in our Sustainability Report on the business year 2020.

Reporting ESG performance

Since 2010, Wienerberger AG has published data on ESG performance in a global sustainability report. Sustainability progress is documented annually, in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Sustainability Reporting Standards: Core option. Our global sustainability reports focus on environmental and social aspects in four areas: Employees, Production, Products and Social and Economic Commitment. 

Wienerberger AG has received the renowned Austrian Sustainability Reporting Award (ASRA) for its global sustainability report for four consecutive years. In 2020, the ASRA jury highlighted Wienerberger AG’s reference to the global Sustainability Development Goals of the United Nations (SDGs) and their sub-goals as a best practice example. Every year, ASRA recognizes the best sustainability reports published by Austrian companies. More information at: ASRA.

In addition, as a participant of the UN Global Compact since 2003, Wienerberger AG produces an annual progress report on the ten principles of human rights, labour standards, environmental protection and anti-corruption.

Additional resources: Ethics & Conduct

Additional information on Corporate Governance of the Wienerberger Group is available at Wienerberger AG: Investor Relations

The information below outlines the application of Wienerberger AG’s corporate governance principles within Wienerberger Limited, in the UK. 

If individuals working for, or on behalf of Wienerberger Limited, believe or suspect that a breach of ethical business practices has occurred, is occurring, or may be about to occur, please report it using our anonymous Whistle Blowing line on 0800 988 6818.

Supply chain management

Wienerberger utilises a group-wide Supplier Code of Conduct, produced by internal and external experts. Since 2019, Wienerberger has used EcoVadis, an international partner for sustainability ratings (ESG ratings), to assess our suppliers’ sustainability performance and potential risks in selected procurement areas.  Moreover, Wienerberger combines information on the general and financial terms and conditions with the EcoVadis ratings of suppliers’ sustainability performance in a Supplier Relationship Management tool. This enables Wienerberger to evaluate suppliers based on their sustainability and risk ratings and their financial terms and conditions.

Modern slavery

Wienerberger Limited, along with our subsidiary BPD Limited, falls into scope of section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and we publish a Modern Slavery Statement annually. Our statement can be accessed via our website and the UK Government’s modern slavery statement registry.

Modern Slavery ⟶

Pay equity

The key principle of equal pay for work of equal value remains an important legal and moral commitment for Wienerberger Limited. Each year we publish a Gender Pay Report that sets out the company’s gender pay gap information at the snapshot date of 5 April, in accordance with the Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017.

Gender Pay Gap Report ⟶

Anti-bribery and corruption

Wienerberger Limited provides mandatory training on anti-bribery and corruption for staff in departments handling sales and accounts management. Our General Terms & Conditions of Purchase require suppliers to adhere to anti-corruption and anti-bribery laws and notify Wienerberger of any breach.

Tax strategy

Wienerberger Limited’s Tax Strategy Statement describes the company’s policy and approach to conducting its and its subsidiaries tax affairs and dealing with tax risk, in accordance with section 19 of the Finance Act 2016.

Tax Strategy Statement Link ⟶

Policies

Additional information on our governance approach can be found within our company policies.

General Terms & Conditions of Purchase ⟶