SFS makes important progress in sustainability

Media release – June 3, 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic was still the dominating topic for the SFS Group in 2021. Despite this challenging environment, it nevertheless managed to maintain its focus on implementing the environmental roadmap presented last year. Important progress has been made towards achieving the ambitious targets, presented in the Sustainability Report 2021 which was published today.

Additional key topic identified in dialog with stakeholders
2021 saw SFS conduct another round of extensive interviews and surveys with the identified stakeholder groups as part of its materiality analysis. Dialog with those groups has shown that the material topics to date are still most relevant. The issue of human rights is a new addition. As a result, SFS currently reports on the following six topics:

  • Economic performance
  • Emissions
  • Occupational health and safety
  • Training and education
  • Human rights
  • Socioeconomic compliance

Rate of occupational accidents down, continued training and education ensured
In the area of occupational health and safety, SFS was able to reduce the number of work-related accidents by –12.8%, putting it one step closer to its goal of halving accidents by 2025.

The long-term target of 5–7% of permanent employees worldwide on training and continuous education programs was confirmed once again last year (5.1%, compared with 5.0% in the previous year). To ensure that this trend continues in the future, SFS aims to expand its dual education activities to other areas of the Group.

Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions reduced
In the area of emissions, SFS’s goal for Scope 1 and Scope 2 is to reduce CO2 emissions (measured in ton of CO2 per Swiss franc of value added) by ≥90% by 2030 compared with 2020. CO2 emissions for Scope 1 and 2 were reduced by –4.5% in the year under review. Using a like-for-like approach, the improvement is as high as a reduction of –11%. The most important drivers were the purchase of green energy and the expansion of our own electricity production through the installation of photovoltaic systems.

No violations of compliance or human rights in the year under review
The SFS Code of Conduct describes the basic principles of being an exemplary, reliable and fair business partner and employer. SFS has established an effective compliance system to ensure compliance with the requirements of the Code of Conduct. In the year under review, the SFS Group was not affected by any sanctions in the area of socioeconomic compliance or human rights violations. This is also the clear expectation for 2022.

Substantial increase in net value added
In terms of economic performance, SFS has set itself the goal of continuously increasing value added and distributing it evenly among its stakeholders. In a dynamic market environment, SFS was able to seize the opportunities that arose and generate strong results. These had a positive impact on the development of net value added in 2021 with growth of 20.2%. Thanks to the healthy project pipeline and solid positioning, SFS expects the company to continue its positive development in 2022 as well.

Outlook: Expansion of self-generated electricity and inclusion of the Hoffmann Group
Consistent implementation of the sustainability targets remains a top priority for the SFS Group in 2022. As a contribution to climate protection, regional energy security and the achievement of national energy policy goals, the company plans to expand the share of self-generated electricity at its Heerbrugg (Switzerland) location. To that end, a wind turbine is being planned to complement the expansion of the existing large-scale photovoltaic system on the company’s premises in Heerbrugg.

By putting an improved sustainability reporting system in place, SFS is responding to the increasing demands of employees, customers and the general public and tapping into further potential for improving performance. In this context, the inclusion of the Hoffmann Group represents another focus for reporting. Hoffmann is a leading international system partner for high-quality tools and has been part of the SFS family since May 2022.

For more information go to sustainability.sfs.com.