METRO GROUP joins the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices World and Europe

22 September 2014

METRO GROUP is returning to the ranks of the world's sustainability leaders in retailing. From today, the Düsseldorf-based company with its sales lines METRO Cash & Carry, Media-Saturn, Real and Galeria Kaufhof will be relisted on the leading international sustainability index Dow Jones Sustainability World, the rating agency RobecoSAM has announced. With a significantly higher score of 71 points in this year's rating (previous year: 60), the METRO AG share will also be added to the Dow Jones Sustainability Europe Index.

"Our inclusion in two of the internationally important sustainability indices demonstrates that we are on the right track with our sustainable business practices," said Heiko Hutmacher, responsible for Sustainability in METRO AG's Management Board. "I am particularly pleased that we cleared the hurdles for inclusion in the Dow Jones index for Europe. This motivates us and serves as affirmation of our environmental and social commitment."

The Dow Jones Sustainability Indices include those companies that represent the best environmental, social and economic performers in their particular industry. The DJSI World consists of about 10 per cent of the 2,500 largest companies for each industry listed in the S&P Global Broad Market Index. The DJSI Europe is made up about 20 per cent of the 600 largest companies for each industry in Europe. The basis for inclusion in these indices is an analysis of companies' sustainability strategies and programmes that is conducted by the independent agency RobecoSAM.

In 2012, the METRO GROUP share was temporarily removed from the DJSI World after 12 consecutive years of membership of the well-known index. "Over the past two years, we deliberately took the time we needed to review and transform all of our sustainability-related activities," Hutmacher said. "This hard work and our re-energised efforts have now paid off. I would like to thank all colleagues involved in the work. We also understand that sustainable actions are not a one-off event. Rather, they involve a process that must be constantly enhanced, improved and modified. This is the declared goal of METRO GROUP."

The analysts highlighted the retail company's commitment to the environmental and social aspects of sustainability. A positive assessment was made about trends in such key environmental performance indicators as greenhouse gases, energy and water consumption, and volume of waste, among other things. METRO GROUP was listed as the best company in its industry in the area of labour practice indicators, the observation of human rights and human-capital development.

In developing its sustainability strategy, METRO GROUP has used the company assessment related to the Dow Jones indices as its guide for many years. Most recently, the company announced at its Annual General Meeting in February 2014 that the issue of sustainability would play a key role in Management Board compensation beginning in financial year 2013/14. Under the Sustainable Performance Plan (SPP), 25 per cent of the long-term incentive component of Management Board remuneration will be tied to the achievement of sustainability targets alongside key performance indicators based on the company's share price. The amount of the long-term incentive related to the sustainability components is linked to the ranking that METRO AG achieves in the RobecoSAM sustainability ranking in comparison with competitors in its industry. Compensation for the senior management of METRO GROUP around the world has also been modified in this manner.

METRO GROUP is one of the largest and most important international retailing companies. During the financial year 2012/13 (pro forma), it generated sales of about €66 billion. The company operates around 2,200 stores in 31 countries and has a headcount of around 250,000 employees. The performance of METRO GROUP is based on the strength of its sales brands that operate independently in their respective market segments: METRO/MAKRO Cash & Carry - the international leader in self-service wholesale - Media Markt and Saturn - the European market leader in consumer electronics retailing - Real hypermarkets and Galeria Kaufhof department stores.