ESG responsibility within Synsam
The ambitions for Synsam Group’s work with sustainability are high. The company’s goal is to both be and be perceived as a sustainable company in the long-term. Synsam Group’s vision is clear as to how the company wants to work with sustainability within the group: We are the leading and most sustainable lifestyle company within optics and eyecare. The work with environmental, social and ethical responsibility includes many different areas, which together aim to contribute to sustainable development of society.
Synsam Group supports the UN sustainable development goals in Agenda 2030 and the company considers itself to have both responsibility and opportunity to contribute to several of the goals. The company primarily focuses on goal 12, “Responsible Consumption and Production”, and goal 3, “Good Health and Well-Being”. Synsam Group also supports the Global Compact principles for responsible businesses.
Synsam Group’s value chain, which the company is responsible for from start to finish, is the foundation of the work for sustainability and the company holds its employees to high internal standards and its suppliers to high external standards. The company will review every part of its business; from design, raw material purchases, production and transportation, through business and retail to product use and reuse and recycling. Every step in Synsam Group’s value chain contains identified processes and approaches for an ever-continuing work towards improvement.
- Synsam Group is perceived as sustainable by consumers in Sweden and have in the past three years earned the title as Sweden’s most sustainable Optician according to Sustainable Brand index.
Synsam Group’s production of spectacles is moving from Asia to Sweden, Frösön outside Östersund.
Responsibility for the environment
Synsam Group’s work and responsibility for the environment involves several important areas. The company considers its environmental impact in every process. Already at the drawing board for Synsam Group’s products, sustainable and high-quality products are designed, in order to enable the company’s customers to make conscious and good choices. High demands are made through Synsam Group’s supplier code of conduct in purchasing, production and choosing means of transportation. The company also focuses on reuse and recycling.
- The latest and single largest initiative that Synsam Group can share is that the company’s production of spectacles is moving from Asia to Sweden, Frösön outside Östersund, with production starting in 2022. To manufacture locally provides the company with the opportunity to speed up launching of new products and meet the great customer demand of sustainable and locally manufactured products. The relocation of its manufacturing is the single the largest initiative Synsam Group has taken to decrease its environmental impact.
- The whole platform of Synsam Group’s new store chain “Synsam Recycling Outlet” is built on the principle of sustainability. The customer makes sustainable choices through the purchase of second-hand products or through buying frames which have been not sold in ordinary retail, but are given a second chance in the recycling outlet. The five stores that Synsam Group has opened since December 2020 are a success and are at the top of the company’s sales charts, which confirms the customer’s interest in sustainable consumption and that Synsam Group, as the market leader, can make an impression for more sustainable consumption.
- All of Synsam Group’s 490 stores contain “Reuse and Recycling boxes” where the company encourages the customers to hand in their used spectacles and sunglasses. Everything is sorted and goes either to a “Synsam Recycling Outlet” or is remade into new spectacles in the company’s brand “Circular Collection”. The more sustainable range of products are given exposure through clear categorization in Synsam Group’s stores.
- A subscription for eyewear products instead of a purchase gives the customers the opportunity to regularly examine their eyesight and if needed change lenses and/or turn in their spectacles for recycling or reuse.
- The brand “Fellepini x Sea2See” which launched during spring 2019 has become a success and is at the top of Synsam Group’s sales. Fellepini x Sea2See has contributed to cleanse the oceans of about 60 tons of plastic = a contribution to cleaner oceans and water.
- The Synsam Group compensates for part of the plastic used in one-day lenses together with the company’s supplier CooperVision. Synsam Group’s customers help to neutralize the environmental impact of producing the lenses when they choose to buy one of the certified lenses. Plastic Bank collects, sorts and processes plastic from maritime areas with the purpose to return the plastic back into the circular flow.
Social responsibility entails Synsam Group’s responsibility for people in the communities where the company operates, Synsam Group’s employees and the people involved in the company’s supply chain. Synsam Group’s societal mission is; to help people with their eye health, is at the centre of everything the company does. A sustainable and healthy employeeship, and through Synsam Group’s supplier code of conduct take responsibility for working conditions in the company’s supply chain, is also a part of Synsam Group’s agenda for sustainability.
- Synsam Group’s most important supplier categories are lenses and spectacle frames. A large share of the group’s frames is produced in Asia. Risks of deficiencies in social conditions, human rights and environmental responsibility exist in the supply chain. Responsibility is regulated in Synsam Group’s Code of Conduct for suppliers, which is part of the agreement signed with each supplier. The purchasing department is responsible for follow-up and has the right to verify that each supplier follows the Code of Conduct.
- Synsam Group has a full membership in the Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI). BSCI is a system made to ensure responsibility in the supply chain, which builds upon eleven principles that among other things prohibits child labour, forced labour and corruption as well as setting standards for safety and reasonable work hours. The purchasing department is responsible for reviewing and controlling the company’s compliance with BSCI.
- Synsam Group’s CSR initiative, Alla Ska Se (Everybody Should See), has contributed free activity spectacles to more than 30,000 children which has led to a more active spare time for these children, no matter what vision impairments they may have. The initiative also contributes to reducing the risk of being sedentary, raising physical and mental well-being of the children and over time reduce medical costs in society.
- Synsam Group’s optician are continuously working to contribute to SDG Goal 3: “Good Health and Well-Being” by helping people with their eye health. Without healthy vision one cannot efficiently utilize education, work related tasks and physical activity. Visiting an optician regularly is as important as annually visiting a dentist.
- Synsam Group is a member of Vision for All, an organization which donates spectacles and performs eye examinations through volunteer work in developing countries.
- Attract, develop and keep motivated employees with the right competence and understanding for the customers’ needs are a crucial success factor. The goal is to be the most attractive company in the industry and form a strong value driven culture, and Synsam Group is actively working to provide a good working environment.
Anti-corruption: The Synsam Group’s anti-corruption policy regulates the giving and receiving of benefits or presents as well as rules and regulations for agents and other intermediaries. All employees are informed about the policy and training is provided for employees in purchasing and marketing departments as well as people working in high-risk countries. During the year, Synsam Group has not been made aware of any attempts or suspicions of corruption or bribery among employees.