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BSCI and Sedex in Ground-breaking New Collaboration

Date

26 May 2016

Sections

Innovation & Enterprise
Competition
Trade & Society

Brussels / London – 26 May 2016. Sedex – the leading non-profit organisation working with buyers, suppliers and auditors to improve global supply chains – and BSCI – the leading business-driven initiative supporting retailers, importers and brands to improve working conditions in supplying factories and farms worldwide – have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to co-develop projects and programmes that enhance the sustainability efforts of their memberships.

The partnership will see the two organisations working more closely together, leveraging their joint strengths to drive scale within the responsible sourcing industry and creating numerous benefits for the memberships of both. This will establish a firm base and mutual understanding which can be further built upon to continue the collaboration in future.

“After months of discussion, it is with great excitement that we announce the collaboration between Sedex and BSCI”, commented Jonathan Ivelaw-Chapman, Sedex CEO. “While the two organisations have historically been competitors, both recognise that simplification and collaboration – core values of Sedex and BSCI – are absolutely crucial to the development of the responsible supply chain industry as a whole.”

“Although both organisations will remain separate entities with separate memberships, goals and objectives, we are looking forward to leveraging the considerable market size of both BSCI and Sedex to effect positive change in the industry”, commented Christian Ewert, FTA Director General. “We are confident that this MoU will be the start of a long and fruitful relationship for BSCI, Sedex, and the companies that make up our global memberships.”

Within the overall aims of reducing duplication of effort, driving scale and setting the grounds for an active collaboration, the MoU outlines a number of focus areas for immediate attention:

·         Human trafficking: BSCI and Sedex will collaborate to align global brands and retailers on best approaches to tackling the issue of human trafficking.

·         Shared capacity building: BSCI will explore opportunities to include Sedex members in BSCI capacity building activities.

·         Continuous improvement of labour relations: BSCI and Sedex will work together on a common approach to implementing a process of continuous improvement of labour relations at the workplace.

·         Audit quality metrics: Working in alignment with the Association for Professional Social Compliance Auditors (APSCA), BSCI and Sedex will develop and launch shared auditor metrics for the management of audit quality. This common approach will help drive a common view of audit quality for suppliers, brands and retailers across the globe.

·         Data collaboration: BSCI and Sedex will explore opportunities to collaborate on the outputs of data from both systems that would better support their membership organisations track, manage and predict social and environmental issues in the global supply chain.

·         Working group collaboration: Members of the leadership teams of BSCI and Sedex will be given a role on each other’s working groups to explore further opportunities to collaborate.

This new partnership comes at an exciting time for both organisations. Sedex has recently launched ‘Sedex Advance’, the world’s largest collaborative platform for sharing data on supply chains, as its membership continues to expand beyond 38,000 members in over 150 countries. Meanwhile, BSCI has launched its upgraded BSCI 2.0 system - a holistic model fostering responsible business practices - and the FTA Academy, a new online service providing over 1,800 companies and 28,000 producers worldwide with access to exclusive learning material and courses.

A list of FAQs can be found here

Supporting quotes from BSCI & Sedex members

Lary Brown, Vice President- Head of Global Social & Environmental Sustainability, Esprit (BSCI member):

“The partnership between Sedex and BSCI is an important step forward for our industry and for the world of social compliance in general. Two of the largest monitoring organisations working together provides opportunities for members of both organisations, as well as thousands of supplier factories, and sends a more uniform message about what we are trying to do. The cooperation emphasises that the multiple organisations in this field are, indeed, all working toward the same goal of seeing ILO standards implemented in workplaces around the world.”

Louise Nicholls, Head of Responsible Sourcing, Packaging and Plan A, M&S (Sedex member)

As a founding member of Sedex, Marks & Spencer welcomes the announcement of its collaboration with BSCI. Both organisations have been instrumental in driving an improvement of standards and continue to innovate in this space. We look forward to seeing the outputs of this new cooperation and how this pooling of resources will increase impact on shared industry issues and development of supply chain improvement opportunities.”

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Media Contacts

Sedex: Charlotte Durrant | Marketing Communications Manager
+44 (0)20 7902 2347 charlotte.durrant@sedexglobal.com | Twitter: @SedexCSR

BSCI: Ana Maria Martin | Media and Editorial Planning Coordinator 
+ 32-2-739 48 22 ana.maria.martin@fta-intl.org | Twitter: @fta_intl 

Notes to editors

About Sedex

Sedex (www.sedexglobal.com) is a global non-profit membership organisation making it simpler to do business that’s good for everyone. It is home to the world’s largest collaborative platform for sharing data on supply chains, used by more than 38,000 members in over 150 countries. For over ten years Sedex has been developing technology and partnerships that enable many of the world’s leading brands, and suppliers across the world, to monitor and report on responsible practice. Sedex also convenes the group of auditors who oversee SMETA, the globally-recognised audit procedure used by thousands to check on a broad range of indicators for responsible business.

About BSCI

The Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI) is a business-driven initiative that supports over 1,800 retailers, importers and brand companies to improve working conditions in factories and farms worldwide. BSCI offers companies, from multinationals to SMEs, one common Code of Conduct and a holistic system towards social compliance in the supply chain applicable to all sectors and sourcing countries. BSCI is an initiative of the Foreign Trade Association (FTA), a leading business association of European and international commerce that promotes the values of free trade and sustainable supply chains

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