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Speak Up!

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Our Code shows what we stand for and how we behave. We encourage you to let us know if you think it is being breached.

AkzoNobel has defined a set of Core Principles by which it conducts its business. These Core Principles underpin our culture of Safety, Integrity and Sustainability. Our Code of Conduct and Business Partner Code of Conduct define and explain these Core Principles and how they apply in daily practice to our employees and business partners.

How to raise a concern

Openness and honesty is something we value highly at AkzoNobel. We foster an open dialogue with our employees, customers, business partners, contractors, investors and other stakeholders. If you feel that our Code is being breached we encourage you to let us know. You can raise your concern by talking to the AkzoNobel employee or business partner that you believe is violating our code, by informing management or by using our grievance mechanism, SpeakUp!

You can use SpeakUp! in three different ways:

  1. call the SpeakUp! helpline
  2. use the SpeakUp! website
  3. send a report to SpeakUp! by email or post

To find more information on how you can file a SpeakUp! report, visit our Code of Conduct webpage or our externally operated SpeakUp! website. Applying certain key principles, SpeakUp! is designed to provide you comfort in raising your concern. There shall be no repercussions against anyone for raising their concern in good faith, even if the allegations turn out to be unfounded. Your report will be treated confidentially and only be shared with those who have a need to know. You can file a report anonymously if you want to, although we encourage you to disclose your identity to facilitate the investigation and communication.

If you deliberately make a false accusation or abuse the SpeakUp! reporting process in any way, this will be viewed as a violation of our Code.

What type of concerns can be raised

You can raise concerns regarding past, present or future issues relating to (potential) Code of Conduct violations. Here are some examples:

  • Bribery and corruption, facilitation payments, gifts and entertainment that don't meet our guidelines
  • Inadequate auditing and accounting
  • Violations of competition law or trade controls and sanctions
  • Environmental, health and people, product and process safety violations and issues
  • Unauthorised disclosure of confidential information
  • Conflicts of interest
  • Insider trading
  • Misuse of company resources
  • Fraud
  • Discrimination and harassment
  • Breaches of human rights
  • Retaliation

SpeakUp! is not intended for concerns about the performance of products and services. There are separate complaints and customer service procedures for that, which you may find on the web page of the relevant product or service. It is also not intended for incident reporting, such as safety, medical or travel incidents.

Reporting statistics

The below table provides an overview of Code of Conduct reports and related dismissal. We analyse Code of Conduct reports and reporting statistics and align our compliance programs and trainings to optimize compliance with our Core Principles.

 

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

Number of complaints reported

260

245

295

151170

Health & safety

22

18

42

815

Business integrity

122

112

152

8290

Treatment of employees

113

112

101

6165

Other

3

3

-   

--

Number of dismissals

118

99

131

4346

In 2014, a total of 170 alleged violations of the Code of Conduct were reported, both through SpeakUp! and other channels (such as through management or internal audits). Eleven were managed by the Compliance Committee as they met defined criteria. Company-wide, 46 employees were dismissed on grounds related to breaches of the Code of Conduct. Other sanctions and remedial actions in (partially) substantiated matters included: review of procedures/controls (12), coaching/training (8), warnings (6), probation (2), and other disciplinary actions (1).