Sustainability

General

Our main contribution to a more sustainable world centres around the products and services we provide to our worldwide customer base. The areas where we can make the most telling contributions are:

  • Resource scarcity: in today's world, metals are in greater demand but are becoming ever scarcer. Umicore's recycling capabilities recover more than 20 elements including precious and other metals.
  • Clean air: worldwide efforts towards stricter emissions standards provide global growth opportunities in automotive catalysts, for both light- and heavy-duty vehicles.
  • Vehicle electrification: the growing market for lithium ion batteries is driving demand for our rechargeable battery cathode materials.

Economic

Umicore has outstanding growth prospects in those products and services that are based on the drive towards cleaner mobility (automotive catalysts and rechargeable battery materials) as well as in those areas that tackle resource efficiency through our closed loop business model that ensures the recycling of precious and specialty metals. Based to a large extent on the growth potential in these areas, Umicore has the ambition to double its profits by 2020 from the levels of 2014. This should also result in a more balanced portfolio with the three business groups gradually making up more equal contributions to earning. The aim is to achieve a return on capital of above 15% over this period.
Find out more about the economic elements of Horizon 2020 here.

Value chain and society

Horizon 2020 adopts a conscious view of Umicore’s presence in the overall value chain. We strive to leverage our sustainability expertise both up the value chain (supply) as well as down the value chain (products and services). From a supply perspective Umicore seeks to generate a greater competitive edge by promoting its ethical sourcing approach and closed loop business offering. In terms of sustainable products and services Umicore aims to generate further competitive benefits through the development of products that have specific sustainability benefits such as the reduction of harmful substances or the enhancement of material or energy efficiency.

Eco-efficiency

We aim to drive an even more efficient use of metals, energy and other substances in our operations. To this end we will pursue selective eco-efficiency initiatives in business units and sites where these can generate compelling value for example through reduced costs or a strengthened license to operate.

Great place to work

A great place to work is a safe, healthy and engaging workplace. Umicore seeks to be a workplace with zero lost time accidents. In terms of occupational health we aim to further reduce employee exposure to specific metals. On people engagement, we also want to make progress on specific strategically important themes of talent management, diversity and employability.

Find out more about our overall sustainability performance

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Find out more about governance at Umicore

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Find out more about our values

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