Social, ethical and environmental (“SEE”) matters influence the Group’s reputation, demand for merchandise by consumers, the ability to recruit staff, relations with suppliers and standing in the financial markets. Signet, therefore, is committed to managing the SEE risks and responsibilities facing the Group. This commitment stems from the understanding that Signet’s success is dependent on the strength and effectiveness of its relationships with its various stakeholders: shareholders, customers, employees and suppliers.
In recent years stakeholder expectations of public companies have increased. Managing and responding as a business to these changing expectations, including with regard to SEE issues, is part of the normal responsibilities of corporate management.
The Group regularly carries out SEE risk reviews and benchmarking exercises with the assistance of an external adviser. Such reviews include an assessment of Group policies, procedures and controls in respect of SEE matters. Reports are regularly made to the Group’s Risk Management Committee and to the Board. The greatest SEE risks are judged to relate to the integrity of the merchandise and to SEE standards in the Group’s supply chain (see Supply chain).
On 1 February 2007 the Association of British Insurers published updated guidelines on Socially Responsible Investment. In line with that guidance the Board confirms that it has identified and assessed the Group’s SEE risks and that these are being managed.