ESG story and achievements 

At Royal Unibrew, sustainability/ESG is deeply engrained in our purpose and ambition to be THE PREFERRED CHOICE

 

 

Our governance structure

Our sustainability/ESG activities are anchored at the Board of Directors who has the oversight of our strategy, targets, impacts, risks and opportunities and Group policies together with the Executive Management.

Our targets and relevant business processes are implemented through the Growth Leadership Team, consisting of SVPs and VPs from our main markets and Group functions, including the Sustainability VP. The latter reports directly to the CEO. Thus, the ESG/sustainability area adheres to the same governance principles as all other business critical processes and decisions.

The Executive Management and senior management teams have long-term and short-term incentive programs (LTIP/STIP) that are directly linked to Royal Unibrew’s sustainability and ESG performance. The ESG targets constitute 15% and 20%, respectively, of the total weight in 2023.

We are constantly working on improving the transparency in decision processes and due diligence related to our strategy, material issues, policies, actions, targets and performance. Establishing clear accounting principles for ESG data and thus forming the basis for external assurance has been an integral part of this process. Group CSR and finance are responsible for reporting our results, including good practice guidelines for risks and internal controls. The ESG data governance and materiality responsibility lies at the Audit Committee, whereas the Board of Directors oversees all sustainability aspects, including the strategy.

A strong company culture is crucial for our progress and performance – a culture in which decisions are made in respect of our consumers’, customers’, suppliers’, shareholders’ and other key stakeholders’ views and priorities, and a culture that encourages people to take responsibility for their actions. In Royal Unibrew, we believe that having ESG matters anchored in our strategy ensures that we include these aspects in daily decision making.

Internal controls and the whistleblower scheme are important means for controlling and reporting potential irregularities, also by external stakeholders. Regular training is among our tools to ensure compliance, i.e. employees and specific business functions are trained in relevant aspects depending on their potential exposure.

 

Policies and systems

Royal Unibrew is working in accordance with international and national legislation, as well as international guidelines, conventions, and standards for environment, social conditions, governance and sustainability. Our policies and systems ensure compliance.

Royal Unibrew’s policies provide guidance for the employees, third parties acting on behalf of the company and suppliers regarding anti-corruption, environment/climate, human rights and labor standards, quality and product safety, data safety, competition, and responsible marketing. The basic requirement is legal compliance combined with awareness of potential impacts, risks and opportunities. Thus, the policies and procedures ensure our freedom to operate.

Implementation of processes and procedures to align further and be ready to disclose in accordance with the Corporate Social Responsibility Directive (CSRD) and the requirements as outlined in the European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) has been ongoing in 2023. Despite the fact that Royal Unibrew has been disclosing ESG performance KPIs for many years, it is a huge endeavor to provide the required data and documentation. We have decided to get limited assurance of our ESG data for 2023 to make sure our accounting principles, internal controls and documentation are in place.

We are monitoring additional future EU legislation closely such as the proposed Corporate Social Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD), Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR), climate labelling, as well as the remaining standards for the EU Taxonomy, especially on circularity and biodiversity to be ready with technologies, processes and tools for implementation of requirements.

 

Tax

Creating jobs and delivering prosperity in the communities in which Royal Unibrew operates are our tangible contributions to society.

Providing transparent disclosures for tax is anchored in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)  (1 No Poverty, 10 Reduced Inequalities and 17 Partnerships) and our business integrity, which is further elaborated in our Tax Policy and processes.

Royal Unibrew operates in a number of predominately European countries and is therefore subject to both national and international tax rules. Royal Unibrew follows the OECD principles for transfer pricing disclosures and documentation and use external advisors to prepare the documentation. We always enter an open and constructive dialogue with the tax authorities, and we are pleased to report that we were not involved in any instances of non-compliance with tax legislation in 2023.

For 2023, Royal Unibrew has sold goods in countries that are defined as tax havens by OEDC, i.e., Trinidad, Panama, Antigua, Bahamas, Turks and Caicos and the U.S. Virgin Islands, effectively fully taxed in Denmark.

Total tax contribution

In 2023, Royal Unibrew had a total tax contribution of DKK 7.3 billion (2022: DKK 6.8 billion) divided between taxes borne of DKK 0.3 billion (2022: DKK 0.3 billion) and taxes collected of DKK 7.0 billion (DKK 6.5 million). Taxes collected comprise excise duties, VAT and personal taxes and social security contributions. Royal Unibrew seeks to comply with all tax legislation to our business operations, and we have prepared the country-by-country tax disclosure based on the GRI 207 tax guideline.

Tax incentives

Royal Unibrew seeks to benefit from tax incentives where this is industry standard for being competitive. As an example, Royal Unibrew engaged in a step-up tax arrangement with the Italian tax authorities in 2019. The arrangement was related to a reverse merger where relevant intangible assets with an associated value of EUR 40 million was recognized. The recognized intangible assets are deductible in the Italian tax over 5 years span. For being entitled to this, a step-up tax of 16% equal to nominal EUR 6.4 million was paid in 2019.