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Corporate responsibility

Read the shortened version below, or the whole corporate responsibility report found here.
View the full list of our suppliers here.

We have no secrets.

A few years ago, corporate responsibility meant hollow words and empty promises for me, too. My thinking changed quickly when we acquired Finlayson. There are industries in the world where there is a desperate need for thinking in terms of responsibility. The textile industry represented by Finlayson is one such industry in which questions of responsibility must be taken seriously. Almost every day we can read about abuses by our industry that generally concern treatment of employees and working conditions. We are also often amazed by how difficult it is to find out where a finished product has been made and to determine the quality of a product. This unfairness and secrecy seems strange to someone coming from outside of the industry. A business, or any other activity, cannot be based on abuse and secrecy. It has to be open and honest. If something needs to be corrected, it should be corrected immediately and to the extent possible. You should not be ashamed if you get caught for wrongdoings committed by a partner, but you should be ashamed if you know about something and do not do anything, or do not know but try to refute clear, conclusive evidence. For us, responsibility means that we want to act in the way a good person acts with loved ones and his or her surroundings. 
It would have been easy for us to continue doing what Finlayson has always done, but we wanted to radically change our operations toward more responsible operations and a better future. We have a responsibility to care about the society. In our view, assuming a social responsibility is not only the duty of consumers but also companies. We will not do business with partners who engage in unethical behavior, we will share our opinions on social issues, and if necessary we will act instead of shouting from the back row. We are currently developing Finlayson’s corporate responsibility program, which aims to create clear goals, actions and mechanisms for monitoring our corporate responsibility performance. We are ready to tell everyone the names of the partners we work with, and how we collaborate. We have also added the country of manufacture to our packages and technical information describing the quality of fabrics to make it easier for people to know what kind of product they are dealing with. And if someone is concerned about our products or partners, they can always phone us and we always tell them everything we know. 
Jukka Kurttila, CEO


Read the shortened version below, or the whole report found here.

Finlayson in short

 Founded:  1820
 Employees:  130 in Finland (12/2015) 
 Turnover:  22,9 million euros (2015) 
 Stores in Finland:  12 (04/2016)
 Stores outside Finland:  1 (Stockholm) (04/2016)
 Licence partners:   16 is Japan, 1 in the Netherlands, 3 in Finland (12/2015) 
Our logistics center is located in Forssa, Finland and our head office in Helsinki, Finland.
The Principles of Our Corporate Responsibility Work
The cornerstones of our responsibility work are:
Transparency and labour conditions in our supply chain
Circular economy and the reduction of textiles waste
Societal awareness and taking a stand
Our aim is to be the world’s most transparent company in the textile industry. We promise to make our supply chain completely transparent and work towards improving the traceability of our cotton. We realize that this ambitious goal requires clear objectives and long-term efforts together with our manufacturing partners and other stakeholders as well as continuous monitoring and reporting of results. 
We aim towards profitable growth and build our business on sustainable grounds.
We will continue to tell our opinions on societal matters.
We try to minimize the environmental impacts caused by our business operations. 
We take care of our employees both in Finland and abroad.
We do not do business with unethical partners.
We will invest in the quality of our products also in the future - we do not want to increase the amount of poor quality production that is based on a disposable culture. We intend to investigate on the recyclability of our materials and see our products as potential raw material for new products. We plan to keep up the work we started towards utilizing textile waste. 
We are currently developing Finlayson’s corporate responsibility program, which aims to create clear goals, actions and mechanisms for monitoring our operations aimed at economic, social and environmental responsibility. The purpose of the program is to better integrate corporate responsibility into our daily work. We will begin with annual reporting of corporate responsibility in the spring of 2016 because the year 2015 was the first complete year of operation with the new ownership base and organization. Therefore, the information we report will be comparable to forthcoming years. We will publish the target program of corporate responsibility and key indicators of 2015 during the spring of 2016 on our website. 
See more comprehensive information on our corporate responsibility here.
We are excited discuss our corporate responsibility matters. You can send us feedback and comments to: [email protected]

Finlayson was part of a project welcoming asylym seekers to Finland. #Suomisayswelcome (09/2015)

We have divided our corporate responsibility work in six areas: 
1. Economic Responsibility
Our economic responsibility is based on profitability, growth and building a business on a sustainable basis. We create economic well-being to society by offering permanent and temporary jobs and assuming our responsibility for agreed regulations and as a tax payer. 
In June 2014 Finlayson Oy received new owners when Jukka Kurttila, Petri Pesonen and Risto Voutilainen purchased the company from a fund managed by CapMan, a private equity investment group. All three main owners are also employees of Finlayson. Sophia Ehrnrooth later became the fourth owner of Finlayson with a smaller stake. Under new leadership, we aim to put even more effort into the sustainability or our business operations.
2. Social responsibility
For us, social responsibility means that we have opinions and we believe in something. We take part in the social debate; we defend things that are important to us and stand behind our position. We work and take concrete steps on behalf of tolerance and equality as part of our everyday business activity. We engage in collaboration with only those customers and companies that act ethically and in accordance with the law and regulations. All of us in the textile industry in particular, where supply chains are scattered over the globe, must be required to assume responsibility for our entire production chain. In 2016 we will organize stakeholder meetings in order to engage in a real dialogue with our stakeholders and receive feedback for our work.
Case: Same Country – event (December 2015)
On the eve of Finnish Independence Day in December 2015 we organized an event called Samaa maata (Same Country) with citizen activist Suldaan Said Ahmed in three locations. Asylum seekers distributed 3,000 Moomin towels donated by Finlayson and 3,000 candles donated by Havi to poor or disadvantaged Finns. The purpose of this event was to calm down the general atmosphere and to provide an opportunity for encounters between cultures and religions. 
Case: Termination of cooperation with the Kärkkäinen department store
In the spring of 2015 we decided to stop working with the Kärkkäinen department store because of the connections between the publication called Magneettimedia and the owners of the store. In our opinion, Magneettimedia delivers racist and narrow-minded propaganda. Before the decision to end our cooperation, we requested Kärkkäinen to provide us with a clarification or explanation of the ownership of Magneettimedia but we did not receive a direct response to this. Information about ownership relationships were not included in statements and reports in spite of our requests. The decision was not easy for Finlayson financially but we did not want to continue working with a company whose values differ so radically from our own. 

Headline of a Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat. Translation: "Finlayson: Cooperation with the Kärkkäinen department store ends due to the department stores owner's narrow-minded and racist oppinions." (4/2015)
3. Environmental Responsibility
We aim to minimize the ecological impact caused by our business operations. We find and develop solutions that are more sustainable and better for the environment during the entire lifecycle of our products. Our suppliers comply with local environmental legislation but we are currently developing an evaluation process which will allow us to monitor the environmental impact of our suppliers better than before. As part of this work we are making a strategic lifecycle review of our three largest product groups. We will publish the goals of our environmental work as part of our corporate responsibility program in 2016. Our collaboration partner is The Natural Step. Furthermore, in 2016 we will build an environmental program for our office which we will expand later to also cover the logistics center and all of our stores. 
More detailed information on our environmental impacts (emissions, waste, packaging, logistics, energy use and water) can be found from our report [view here].
Case: Circular economy and Finnish rag rugs 
In March 2016 we launched a recycling campaign in which old bed sheets and linens can be taken to our shops. We make rug mats from these sheets in Finland. The old sheets are sorted in Finlayson’s shops based on color and material. Next the sheets are transported out, washed, sewn together and rolled to be cut into wefts. The cut wefts are made into rugs which can also have patterns printed on them. The purpose of the project is to create new jobs in Finland and to reduce the amount of textile waste generated in Finland. Rag rugs will be available in our stores and online store during summer of 2016. 

Advertisement for the recycling campaign. Translation: "We will buy your old sheets, as you change them for new ones in our stores."
4. Social responsibility
By social responsibility we mean taking care of our employees in Finland and other countries. Our success is dependent on the well-being and motivation of our employees. All of our workers are entitled to the same human rights. Our subcontractors also work for us. They need to be treated with respect for the law and human rights. We have to do everything in order to ensure fair and safe working conditions for the employees of our subcontractors. 
Our human resources policy is based on our company’s values as well as principles of responsible business. We comply with the Non-Discrimination Act by the Finnish Ministry of Employment and the Economy, the point of which is to ensure that the policies of companies in regards of tasks, trainings, wages and benefits are genuinely equal to all employees.
Case: Smart commuting 2016
In 2016 we are participating in a pilot project for smart commuting by Helsinki Regional Transport Authority (HSL) and Valpastin Ltd., which is aimed at getting Finlayson’s employees to try new ways to get to work, such as walking, bicycling or public transportation. Alternative ways to commute can contribute to improving employees’ health and also save money and especially the environment. The pilot project will continue until autumn 2016.
5. Responsible Supply Chain
Our products are manufactured mainly in Europe and Turkey by our suppliers. For us, a responsible supply chain means, above all, ethics related to producing our products. This requires us to be completely transparent and open with regard to our supply chain. We openly disclose the origin of products. Our partners have signed the ILO Declaration on the Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. Our goal is to have all of our partners committed to the principles defined by BSCI in the future. 
We want to tell where our products are manufactured. In our opinion consumers have the right to know and we have the obligation to tell what kind of manufacturing process our products undergo and where. In 2015, 95 % of our products were made in Europe or Turkey (as measured by purchase prices).

We are currently in the process of researching the origin of cotton used in our products and investigating different possibilities for improving the traceability of cotton in order to get a full picture on the cotton used in our products. The manufacturers of our products buy the cotton that they use themselves and thus we do not have direct influence on the origin of cotton. In the same research we will investigate the amount of genetically modified cotton used in our products. We will report the progress of the research and what actions we will take as we go along with the study. 

Fair Trade Towels
In addition to BSCI, our sourcing is guided by the principles of Fair Trade. The purpose of Fair Trade is to improve the conditions of small farmers in developing countries and employees of large farms in international trade. “In fair trade, small farmers are paid a guaranteed price that covers the costs of production that is sustainable in terms of the environment and people. The guaranteed price is a safety net for farmers against the fluctuations of global market prices.” (Reilu kauppa ry 2015) Fair Trade requires a precise description of products, their production chain and traceability. Our collection has Fair Trade towels made in Belgium. 

6. Product Liability
Our main product categories are: bedroom, bathroom and kitchen textiles, fabrics and other products, such as trays. Our products are based on quality, safety and durability. Product design plays a critical role in ensuring these. We want to make better, higher quality and safe products that provide users with joy as long as possible.   
Chemicals are used in different production stages of the textile industry: products are dyed, finished and washed. The majority of the chemicals are completely harmless while others may even be carcinogenic. All of our manufacturers have committed themselves to the EU’s REACH -regulation, which is a regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on the registration, evaluation, authorization and restriction of chemicals. REACH compiles, updates and publishes a candidate list of chemicals that are of very high concern and whose use is subject to authorization or prohibited. We require that our products do not contain any chemicals that are in the candidate list by REACH.
In addition to REACH, our chemical monitoring is guided by Oeko-Tex certification. 98 % of our textile products have been certified by the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 (2015). Oeko-Tex certification of a product guarantees that all the components of that product (fabrics, yarns, zippers, insides etc.) satisfy strict chemical requirements. Oeko-Tex continuously monitors its conformity regarding substances that are used in the textile industry and are on the list of chemicals that are of particular concern to REACH, and re-evaluates its testing criteria every year.

You can send us feedback and comments to: [email protected]
View the whole corporate responsibility report here.