Our responsibility in the markets and towards the environment

Our responsibility in the community and the markets

better together in the communities where we are active

Bekaert strives to be a loyal and responsible partner in the communities where we are active. We make a point of interacting with local governments in a transparent, constructive way, and we are firmly committed to complying with national legislations and collective labor agreements. Bekaert adheres to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the treaties and recommendations of the International Labor Organization.

better together by embracing diversity

At Bekaert, we acknowledge the importance of diversity – diversity of people, products, customers, suppliers, cultures and regions. We see diversity as an opportunity. better together by embracing diversity is not only a slogan; it is our aspiration.

We practice a two-fold hiring policy. First, our customers expect service from strong local teams, so we prefer working with people who are familiar with the conditions under which local businesses operate. Second, we focus on diversity of people. We set up teams consisting of talent from different nationalities, cultures and backgrounds, encouraging them to share their knowledge, strengths, experiences and perspectives with each other.

better together with customers and suppliers

All over the world, we aim to stay close to our customers. As such, we have production facilities and sales offices in 40 countries and help our customers and domestic suppliers develop their products and processes.

In 2013 Bekaert won the 2013 EIPM Peter Kraljic Excellence Award for “Value creation – extended enterprise”, which is handed out by The European Institute of Purchasing Management (EIPM). This award validates Bekaert’s excellence in purchasing processes and is the result of a performance assessment based on the EFQM Excellence Model and EFQM best practices.

Our baseline better together sums up the unique cooperation between Bekaert and its business partners. We work closely with customers and suppliers by engaging in co-development projects, conducting feedback initiatives and satisfaction surveys, and performing industry analyses.    

Our responsibility towards the environment

better together for a cleaner world is one of Bekaert’s ambitions: we continuously strive to use fewer materials, cut energy consumption and reduce waste.

Bekaert’s concern for the environment is three-fold:

First, we seek to develop new, eco-friendlier production processes for our plants worldwide. In 2013, we continued to work on the ‘New Environmental Technologies’ project. This project was launched in 2011 in order to build up knowledge and expertise in environmental technologies and thereby boost the environmental performance of plants worldwide. Practical solutions that have been developed include the installation of a new evaporator type to treat the rinsing waste water and the installation of spray dryers which use recuperated heat.

In 2013, 95% of our consolidated plants worldwide were ISO 14001 certified. Bekaert’s full worldwide certification is an ongoing goal and an element in the integration process of newly acquired entities and of companies that are added to the consolidation perimeter.

Bekaert’s concern for the environment also involves investing in product innovations that allow for process improvements at the production sites of our customers. Our ternary alloy coated steel cord for tires enables our customers to simplify their production processes and make them more environmentally friendly. Our Dramix® steel fibers used in the construction sector lead to less usage of steel compared to traditional concrete reinforcement products, less energy consumption and faster processing.

Lastly, Bekaert develops products that contribute to a cleaner environment. To name a few: our super and ultra-tensile steel cord for example answer the need for light-weight materials in cars. Other examples are stainless steel wedge wires used for oil and water filtration, cable-armoring solutions for green power transmission, and substitutes for solvent-based coatings.

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