Maintaining long-term relations

Decathlon entrusts the production of its sports articles to a panel of suppliers, organised by production process. Our local production teams, operating from our production offices, are responsible for day to day relations with suppliers.

The plethora of manufacturing processes used to make our products means that Decathlon’s supply chain is extremely complex. Our efforts with regard to manufacturing aim to achieve better traceability, transparency and ethical thinking within our business practices.

Decathlon sub-contracting
in 2016

A summary

• Our production teams were regularly on site to coordinate the ongoing improvements to industrial organisation (quality, timeframes and efficiency, etc.).

• A new Code of Conduct aimed at our suppliers will replace the human responsibility in production charter, in a bid to clearly lay out our expectations regarding ethics in business and fair practices.

• We continued to develop our strategic partnerships, with 31 partner suppliers in 2016.

« Production team member: a modular role »

Production teams are working hard on a number of areas. They define the required production and investment capacities that must be achieved in order to manufacture products. They also help suppliers to comply with Decathlon’s standards in terms of quality timeframes, working conditions and environmental conditions , and oversee their ongoing improvement.

Our new Code of Conduct in production : retain the basics while incorporating new issues

After analysing the global risks identified over the last fourteen years in our supply chain, we reviewed our human responsibility in production charter in 2016 so as to incorporate new international issues and broaden its remit to include environmental and social challenges. This work was carried out by retaining references to our fundamental principles and by taking into account new audit methods, new risks and new international standards. Our new Code of Conduct, which we will be rolling out internationally during 2017, will deliver a strengthened stance on:

● respect for human rights in the workplace (with the emphasis on promoting decent wages and the fight against modern slavery);

● hygiene and safety conditions (where building safety and electrical safety constitute key themes in certain countries);

● environmental management of production sites;

● chemicals management;

● the fight against un-declared outsourcing;

● the fight against corruption;

● the origins and manufacturing conditions of raw materials (including cotton, wool and leather, among others);

● respect for animal welfare.

“With this document, we are clearly expressing our expectations pertaining to our current strategies, as well as those we are keen to develop in the coming months. Some topics will be dealt with through social and environmental assessments. The others will bring forth a range of commitments, pilot projects and local initiatives, enabling us to trial solutions before rolling them out more widely. Our new Code of Conduct will be deployed at international level during 2017.”

Leader of the human responsibility in production process
« The fight against un-declared outsourcing »

Outsourcing that is not declared by suppliers is difficult to detect.

Despite being officially opposed to this practice, as signified by a contractual clause signed by suppliers, and even though our teams are regularly present on-site and on the ground, certain suppliers could still use external service providers to help manufacture our products, without our prior consent.

To combat this, we’ve trained our teams to be able to precisely determine our capacities at key product development stages, and then during batch production. We conduct regular cross-checking between real capacities and the number of products delivered, to minimise the risks.