K Group: All Pirkka cosmetic products are free of microplastics since 1 January 2018

K Group: All Pirkka cosmetic products are free of microplastics since 1 January 2018

 

Helsinki, Finland, 2018-Feb-08 — /EPR Retail News/ — Cosmetic products often use small microbeads that are able to pass through wastewater treatment facilities to water bodies. Microplastics are an environmental risk in waterways due to their longevity. In 2017, K Group fulfilled its commitment and eliminated microbeads from the Pirkka cosmetic products. This action was one of the actions taken by the K Group to reduce plastic waste.

“The serious harmful impacts of microplastics on the environment have been recently acknowledged. There is no current EU or domestic legislation on microplastics, but we at K Group wanted to take initiative on the matter on our own. According to the Finnish Environment Institute, approximately ten per cent of the plastics floating in the world’s oceans are microplastics, so all actions taken to reduce the amount of microplastics are important,” says K Group Product Quality Manager Timo Kivi.

In 2017, K Group fulfilled its commitment and eliminated microbeads from all of the cosmetic products in its own brands. Microbeads will also be removed in 2018 from all of the detergents in K Group’s own brands.

Microbeads have been used, for example, as abrasive and cleansing ingredients in cosmetics and detergents. Small, plastic particles less than 5 mm in size, however, are able to easily pass through wastewater treatment facilities into waterways where they are an environmental risk due to their longevity. When the plastic ends up in the water, it also causes serious harm to animals and can easily enter the human food chain.

“Microplastic-free products must also conform to our strict quality requirements. Microbeads may greatly affect the appearance and features of the product, so eliminating them meant re-evaluating the entire composition of the product. For example, eliminating microplastics from detergents affects the colour and transparency of the products,” says Timo Kivi.

K Group is actively developing new types of operational models in order to reduce plastic waste.

Plastics cause problems when they end up in water bodies and elsewhere in the environment. Together with manufacturing and its business partners, K Group is actively developing completely new types of operational models to reduce plastic waste. Tangible goals and actions have been listed in K Group’s plastics policy. K Group’s goal is that by 2025, 100% of plastic waste is recovered across all divisions.

“It is our responsibility to ensure that the customer can shop with confidence in K-stores. As the world’s most sustainable trading sector company, K Group wants to actively promote the circular economy and develop completely new types of operational models that prevent plastics from ending up in water bodies and elsewhere in the environment,” says Matti Kalervo, K Group Vice President of Corporate Responsibility.

K Group’s actions to reduce plastic waste:

  • The Green Deal agreement aims to reduce the number of plastic bags.
    K Group participates in the Green Deal agreement made by the Finnish Commerce Federation and the Ministry of the Environment, which aims to reduce the use of plastic bags through voluntary actions. K Group is committed to the EU’s target of reducing the number of plastic bags used annually per person to 40 by 2025.
  • Microplastic-free cosmetics in K Group’s own brands.
    Since 1 January 2018, the cosmetic products in K Group’s own brands are free of environmentally harmful microplastics. All K Group own-brand detergents will also be made microplastic-free in 2018. K Group’s product ranges also do not include OXO-degradable plastic bags or small bags, because they turn into micro-particles as they degrade.
  • The Pirkka ESSI circular bag encourages plastics recycling.
    The Pirkka ESSI circular bag introduced in 2017 is the first Finnish circular economy shopping bag. The bags are made of over 90 % recycled materials, around half of which is plastic packaging waste collected separately from households.
  • EcoFishBox significantly reduces plastic waste produced by the grocery trade.
    The K-food stores have successfully piloted the wood fibre-based EcoFishBoxes made by Stora Enso. Over 100 million styrofoam packages are used to package fish in the Nordic countries every year. Replacing the styrofoam packaging materials with corrugated cardboard reduces carbon dioxide emissions by a minimum of 30% throughout the value chain.
  • K Group’s gift cards were made PVC-free.
    K Group is continuously seeking new replacement material solutions for PVC plastics, which contain chlorine, stabilisers and phthalates that are considered to have significant environmental and health impacts. Since 2017, K Group’s gift cards have been made of PVC-free materials. The manufacturing materials for Plussa cards will also be made PVC-free in 2018.
  • Onninen reduces the number of plastic bags.
    Loyal customers have been distributed shopping baskets at Finland’s Onninen Express stores. The customers are able to take the baskets with them to jobsites and use them during their next visit to the store. In addition, excess cardboard boxes are available to customers and large reusable bags are offered for sale.

All of the Pirkka cosmetic products are free of microplastics since 1 January 2018. Microbeads were eliminated from the following Pirkka products in 2017:

  • Pirkka lip balm natural 4.5g 2-pack
  • Pirkka lip balm cranberry 4.5g
  • Pirkka Perheshampoo 500ml fruit
  • Pirkka Perheshampoo 500ml berry
  • Pirkka Perheshampoo 500ml citrus

K Group’s stores may still have small quantities of products available for sale for a limited time that were ordered prior to the microplastics being removed. Stores also still have a few cosmetic products available for sale that have particles with product names referring to plastics. As a part of the evaluation, it was ensured that the particles in these products are not microplastics.

Media desk:

viestinta@kesko.fi
tel.+358 10 53 50200 (Mon-Fri 8-16)

Source: Kesko Group

###

K Group announces changes to the organisation of its building and technical trade division

Helsinki, Finland, 2017-Oct-27 — /EPR Retail News/ — K Group is the market leader in Finland and a leading operator in Northern Europe in building and technical trade. K Group is making changes to the organisation of its building and technical trade division in an effort to strengthen the division’s profitability and to accelerate international growth. The division operates in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Belarus.

Under the new organisation, local country organizations are responsible for the sales and profit and their management will report directly to the President of the division. Finland will also become a separate country organization and profit unit. Local country organisations will be supported by common supporting functions. At the core of it all are the customer-centric B2B and B2C operations and the commerce organisation, which improves the efficiency of sourcing and the competitiveness of the division.

As of 25 October, Timo Pesonen is appointed country director for Finland while the other country directors continue in their positions: Knut Strand Jacobsen, Norway, Yvonne Magnusson, Sweden, Endre Espeseth, Poland and Artem Taraev, Russia.

In division’s common supporting functions Tommi Kasurinen is appointed as Senior Vice President responsible for finance and strategy and Timo Heimo as a Senior Vice President responsible for eCommerce, digital services and ICT. The other executives continue in their positions: Mikko Pasanen, Senior Vice President, B2B business, Virpi Viinikainen, Senior Vice President, B2C business, Petteri Niemi, Senior Vice President, commerce, supply chain management and logistics, Jonna Nummela, Senior Vice President, marketing and communications and Jennie Stenbom, Senior Vice President, people and culture, HR.

Terho Kalliokoski also acts as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Kesko Senukai. The President of Kesko Senukai, Arturas Rakauskas, reports to Kalliokoski.

For further information: 
Jessica Diktonius, Communications Director, K Group’s building and technical trade, +358 40 709 9176, jessica.diktonius@kesko.fi

Kesko Corporation

DISTRIBUTION
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www.kesko.fi

Kesko and K-retailers form the K Group, whose sales total over €13 billion. K Group is the third largest retail operator in Northern Europe and it employs approximately 45,000 people. Kesko operates in the grocery trade, the building and technical trade and the car trade. Its divisions and chains act in close cooperation with retailer entrepreneurs and other partners. Kesko’s net sales are €10 billion and it employs approximately 28,000 people. Kesko has nearly 2,000 stores engaged in chain operations in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Belarus and Poland. Kesko is a listed company and its shares are listed on Nasdaq Helsinki. The company’s domicile and main business premises are in Helsinki. Kesko is the world’s most responsible trading sector company (The Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World) www.kesko.fi

K-Group recruits nearly 50 new specialists to build the leading digital services in the trading sector

HELSINKI, 2016-Dec-20 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kesko’s 70 digital recruits this year will be complemented by nearly 50 more new digital specialists. New talents are sought to build the leading digital services in the trading sector and to lead IT’s new development teams and digital projects.

The K-Group is now seeking experts in digital business and new technology. Professionals in this field are sought especially for the development of mobile services, analytics, process automation and modern e-commerce solutions.

“We offer IT professionals interesting challenges with latest technology and the opportunity to build the best digital services in the trading sector with top experts,” says Arto Hiltunen, Kesko’s Chief Information Officer.

K-Group is building customer experience into a superior competitive advantage

Kesko’s strategic objective is to offer the K-Group customers the best digital services in the trading sector with which to strengthen the customer experience and the competitiveness of the K-Group’s business operations. This year, 50 digital experts have been recruited by the building and technical trade division and 20 by the K Digital Unit. The search now launched will add 50 new specialists to the K IT Unit.

“We have an excellent team where people really enjoy working. We are looking for new reinforcements in order to accelerate the speed of changes. This is an excellent opportunity to actually contribute to the digital transition. Our work has an impact on the daily lives of all Finnish people,” says Hiltunen.

http://kesko.fi/digital

The K IT Unit underpins digitalisation in all K-Group business operations and operating countries. In our work, we use the leading technology suppliers and the most innovative start-ups of the market, as well as the extensive number of expert business partners.

The about 45,000 exceptionally nice people of the K-Group work daily to make shopping fun for customers in our stores in the Nordic countries, the Baltic countries, Poland and Russia. We help our more than 1,500 stores serve their customers in the grocery trade, the building and technical trade, and the car trade. We do our work with a big heart while paying attention to society and the environment. We are already the most responsible food retailer in the world and always eager to try out something new. We are doing this to offer good choices both on the shelves of the local stores and online. www.kesko.fi

Contact:
Arto Hiltunen
CIO
Kesko Corporation
tel. +358 50 306 4065
arto.hiltunen@kesko.fi

Source: Kesko

K-Group commits itself to actions aimed at reducing the consumption of plastic bags

The K-Group contributes to the effort to reduce the amount of plastic litter that ends up in water bodies and elsewhere in the natural environment. In its commitment to The Society’s Commitment to Sustainable Development published today, the K-Group commits itself to actions aimed at reducing the consumption of plastic bags.

HELSINKI, Finland, 2016-Nov-01 — /EPR Retail News/ — In The Society’s Commitment to Sustainable Development, different operators pledge themselves to promoting sustainable development in their work and operations. Kesko joined The Society’s Commitment and published its first two commitments in September 2015.

The objective of Kesko’s third commitment is to reduce the consumption of plastic bags in K-stores. In the background of the objective are the voluntary actions agreed by the Ministry of the Environment and the Finnish Commerce Federation to ensure that the targets for the reduction of the consumption of plastic lightweight carrier bags set in the EU packaging waste directive are achieved also in Finland. Kesko is committed to the EU’s target that the annual consumption is no more than 40 plastic bags per person by 2025.

Aim is to increase the share of alternative shopping bags

At the beginning of 2017, retail plastic bags will be subject to a charge at all K-Group food stores, building and home improvement stores, agricultural and machinery stores, as well as furniture stores.

By the end of 2017, thin small bags will no longer be on display at the checkout line. They will be handed out on request for covering a wet bouquet of flowers or a package of meat with juice dripping out, for example.

Kesko provides alternatives for plastic bags in its selections: reusable bags, cotton bags and jute bags, as well as paper bags and recycled plastic bags. In the spring of 2017, circular economy bags manufactured by Amerplast Ltd will be added to the choice. Plastic waste returned by households to the Rinki eco take-back points is used in their manufacture.

Active communications in customer channels and stores are used to increase the awareness of the environmental impacts of plastic waste, reduce the consumption of plastic bags, increase the use of alternative solutions, such as reusable bags, paper bags and cotton bags, as well as increase plastics recycling.

Material solutions to replace PVC and micro plastic particles to be removed from own brand cosmetic products

In accordance with its plastics policy statement, Kesko promotes the recycling and reuse of plastics. Kesko creates operating models that prevent plastics from ending up in water bodies and elsewhere in the natural environment.

The chlorine, stabilisers and phthalates contained in polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, are estimated to cause significant environmental and health impacts. Kesko is seeking replacement material solutions for PVC, especially for product or packaging materials that are difficult to recycle, or that are used for a short time. The packaging of those Kesko’s own brand products that currently contains PVC will be replaced by an alternative material by the end of 2016. The use of PVC as the material of Kesko’s gift vouchers will be discontinued within 2017. The aim is to replace the material of Plussa cards with a PVC free material within 2017.

Small micro plastic particles contained in cosmetic products pass through waste water treatment plants into water bodies risking to end up in food chains and household drinking water. Kesko will remove micro plastic particles from its own brand cosmetic products within 2017. Kesko’s selections do not include oxo-degradable plastic bags or small bags because they fragment into micro particles.

Further information:
Matti Kalervo, Vice President, Corporate Responsibility, Kesko Corporation, tel. +358 50 306 4081, matti.kalervo@kesko.fi
Timo Jäske, Sustainability Manager, Kesko’s grocery trade, tel. +358 50 529 2028,timo.jaske@kesko.fi

https://sitoumus2050.fi/

http://kesko.fi/yritys/vastuullisuus/miten-johdamme-vastuullisuutta/linjaukset-ja-kannanotot/keskon-muovilinjaus/

SOURCE: KESKO

K-Group to build new main office building in Kalasatama, Helsinki

Helsinki, Finland, 2016-Aug-06 — /EPR Retail News/ — K-kampus, the K-Group’s new main office building, will be built in Kalasatama, Helsinki. The new, modern workplace of around 1,700 Kesko employees will be completed in spring 2019. The building project will be carried out in cooperation with Varma Mutual Pension Insurance Company.

In terms of both location and transport links, K-kampus in Kalasatama, Helsinki, will be excellent for the K-Group employees and its stakeholders alike. The building will be situated next door to the Kalasatama metro stop and the future shopping centre Redi, where also a K-supermarket and a K-Market will be built.

“A more unified K-Group is one of our strategic objectives. K-kampus, to be built in Kalasatama, will bring together nearly all Kesko employees working in different parts of the Greater Helsinki area. It will increase cooperation and make it easier, as well as enable higher efficiency”, says Kesko’s President and CEO Mikko Helander.

Finland’s most modern workplace
K-kampus will have offices on six floors and the building will cover almost the entire block. The office building is designed and will be built using the latest knowledge about multipurpose workspaces.

The workspaces will cater for different working needs, which is why they may vary from cafe style meeting places to spaces that offer complete silence. They can also be modified as necessary.

On the lowest floor of the building, the K-Group divisions and partners will be able to present their new products to employees and stakeholders. The K-supermarket to open on the grocery trade floor of the Redi shopping centre, and the K-Market to open in connection with the metro stop can be used for introducing the latest innovations to customers.

Employees closely involved in planning
Planning the new K-kampus has begun and the aim is to start building at the turn of the year. The employment effect of the project will be around 1,000 full time equivalents.

People moving to K-kampus are closely included in planning its functionality. In working groups formed to support planning, they can test and comment on, for example, suggestions concerning day-to-day efficiencies, the digital working environment and the flexible new working models of K-kampus.

“All of us K-Group employees work in order to deliver our common customer promise, K – for shopping to be fun. K-kampus, planned and implemented together, will provide unparalleled facilities for this. At the same time, it will be the landmark of the renewed K,” says Helander.

Kesko will sell its old head office property in Katajanokka to Varma. The main premises of Kesko and its predecessors, Maakauppiaiden Oy and Kauppiaitten Keskuskunta, have been located on the property since their completion in spring 1940.

K-kampus in brief:

  •  Kalasatama, Työpajankatu 12, FI-00580 Helsinki
  •   27,000 floor square meters, six floors
  •   Workplace of around 1,700 Kesko employees
  •   To be completed in spring 2019
  •  Building project to be carried out in cooperation with Varma Mutual Pension Insurance Company

Further information:
President and CEO Mikko Helander will present the plans for K-kampus at Kesko’s half year financial report briefing today at 11.30. The briefing will be held at Katajanokka, Helsinki, Ankkurikatu 5, fourth floor.

An illustration of K-kampus is available on the “Current topics” page of Kesko’s material bank at http://aineistopankki.kesko.fi.

The about 45,000 exceptionally nice people of the K-Group work daily to make shopping fun for customers in our stores in the Nordic countries, the Baltic countries, Poland and Russia. We help our more than 1,500 stores serve their customers in the grocery trade, the building and technical trade, and the car trade. We do our work with a big heart while paying attention to society and the environment. We are already the most responsible food retailer in the world and always eager to try out something new. We are doing this to offer good choices both on the shelves of the local stores and online. www.kesko.fi

Contact:

Lauri Peltola
Senior Vice President
Corporate Responsibility
Communications and Stakeholder Relations
tel. +358 105 322 400

Leif Backman
K-kampus Project Director
tel. +358 43 824 3460
leif.backman@kesko.fi

Source: Kesko

K-Group revamps its customer magazine Pirkka

The K-Group’s customer magazine has been revamped in terms of content as well as appearance. Pirkka and its digital channels are a practical media package making the K-Group customers’ daily lives easier with its content, ideas and tips derived from customer needs and recommendations.

HELSINKI, Finland, 2016-Jan-28 — /EPR Retail News/ — “We have redesigned the Pirkka magazine with respect for its traditions. The function of this over 80-year-old magazine, founded in 1933, has been to tell about smart choices and offer inspiration for a good life. And so it is today,” says Merja Haverinen, Vice President for Group Communications and Editor-in-Chief.

In addition to the magazine, Pirkka Media comprises the digital channels www.pirkka.fi and the most frequently used social media channels. There is active dialogue with customers on the digital channels and interesting topics, tips and ideas are produced for them. The classic Niksi-Pirkka is present in the magazine and on the digital channels. A newsletter announcing the publication of the next issue of the magazine summarizes the key news and reminds the customers about the upcoming issue. The newsletter can be subscribed to at www.pirkka.fi.

Nearly eight million copies of the Pirkka magazine are printed per year and it is a significant employer for the Finnish paper and printing industry. Pirkka is a printed product that carries the Swan label and its paper and printing house meet the Nordic environmental criteria. The paper is manufactured in Finland at the Sappi Kirkniemi Mill. The Pirkka magazine is printed by UPC Print in Vaasa. The publisher of Pirkka Media is A-lehdet Dialogi Oy.

“It’s great to be part of building a new kind of media package. In the new Pirkka desk, we continuously produce contents for all Pirkka Media channels, respond to the readers’ needs and help them make smart choices. In addition to tips and useful information, we also want to inspire readers and offer them interesting reading,” says President and CEO Jyrki Rehumäki of A-lehdet Dialogi.

Free access to a full issue of the Pirkka magazine is available to all on the Pirkka.fi service. Printed copies of the Pirkka magazine are delivered to K-Plussa customer households whose average purchase amount from the K-Group stores over the last 12 months exceeds 250 euros per month.

A Pirkka magazine volume can be redeemed with one thousand K-Plussa points by contacting K-Plussa’s customer services at plussa@kesko.fi or by phoning +358 10 198 604 (Mon-Fri at 8-18, local network charge or mobile network charge). A subscription to the magazine at pirkka@dialogi.fi costs 25 euros. A subscription abroad costs 77 euros.

Further information is available from Merja Haverinen, Vice President, Group Communications, tel. +358 105 322 764.

Kesko is a Finnish listed trading sector company. Kesko operates in the grocery trade, the home improvement and speciality goods trade and the car trade. Its divisions and chains act in close cooperation with retailer entrepreneurs and other partners. In 2014, Kesko’s net sales totalled €9.1 billion and it employed nearly 20,000 people. Kesko has over 1,500 stores engaged in chain operations in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia and Belarus. Kesko’s shares are listed on Nasdaq Helsinki. The company’s domicile and main premises are in Helsinki. Kesko is the most sustainable trading sector company in the world (The Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World). www.kesko.fi

A-lehdet Dialogi is a subsidiary of A-lehdet Oy and one of Finland’s biggest content marketing and customer communication houses. We engage in B2B and B2C marketing communications in a number of industries. We produce over twenty customer, personnel and stakeholder magazines in digital and print through all channels. Our customer publications reach over three million Finns.

SOURCE: Kesko Corporation

New kind of K-food store opened in Myllypuro, Helsinki

A new kind of K-food store opens in Myllypuro, Helsinki on 5 November. K-Myllypuro does not belong to any of the current K-food store chains, but is the K-Group’s test store where Kesko, in cooperation with the retailer entrepreneur, boldly experiments with various food store concepts and models. The test store also takes customer-orientation to a completely new level – customers decide how the store, its selections and services will develop in the future.

HELSINKI, Finland, 2015-11-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — K-Myllypuro is an example of the implementation of the K-Group’s strategy and open-minded experimental culture. Agility enables fast testing of ideas in practice.

“We have been actively looking for influences from the world and studied both international and domestic retailing trends. Currently, our customers particularly value a food store’s location nearby and availability of local products, ease of shopping, and wide selections of fresh products, which also form the core of the test store. Our aim is to create a new food store concept for Finland, and the test store is an important step on this road,” says Jorma Rauhala, Senior Vice President for Kesko’s grocery trade.

Customers have been invited to join in the planning of the new store from the very beginning. The customer panel consisting of local residents started its work even before the opening.

“When building the new concept, one of the key issues is to adapt the store to the wishes of local customers, that is, the store is tailored to look like its customers,” says Rauhala.

Based on customer feedback and wishes so far, special attention has been paid to smooth and easy shopping. The name with a strong connection to the residential area was also suggested by the customer panel.

“While the store is opened in the current format, it may be somewhat different in a year’s time. We will collect feedback on store operations from local customer panels, for example, and develop our operations based on this,” says Aleksi Tapani, retailer of K-Myllypuro.

K-Myllypuro provides all products for daily cooking. The focus is on fresh products and the K-Group’s own brands: the versatile and low-priced Pirkka and the budget brand K-Menu. The store also sells selected batches of items at very low prices.

Further information:
Aleksi Tapani, K-retailer, tel. +358 50 4219944
Mika Rautiainen, Vice President, marketing and concept services, tel. +358 50 4136584

See the video presenting K-Myllypuro (in Finnish)

SOURCE: Kesko Corporation

Kesko announced its 2015 financial reporting calendar

Helsinki, Finland, 2014-10-21— /EPR Retail News/ — The 2015 calendar for Kesko Group’s financial reporting concerning the years 2014 and 2015 is the following:

Year 2014 financial statements release 10 February 2015
Year 2014 Annual Report (incl. the financial statements
and the report by the Board of Directors)
Week 12
Year 2015 3-month interim report 28 April 2015
Year 2015 6-month interim report 22 July 2015
Year 2015 9-month interim report 22 October 2015

Kesko Corporation’s Annual General Meeting is planned for Monday, 13 April 2015. The meeting will be convened by the company’s Board of Directors separately at a later date. Possible requests from shareholders to put matters on the agenda of Kesko’s 2015 Annual General Meeting shall be sent to Kesko’s Board of Directors no later than 5 February 2015. A written request, together with an explanation or a draft resolution, shall be sent to Kesko Corporation, Kesko Group’s Legal Affairs, FI-00016 KESKO, or by e-mail to cg@kesko.fi.

The financial statements and interim reports will be released at around 9.00 hours on the given dates. Kesko will observe a three-week period of silence before releasing the financial reports.

In addition, the Group’s sales figures will be published monthly and the K-Group’s retail sales figures in connection with the interim reports.

Further information is available from Merja Haverinen, Vice President, Group Communications, tel. +358 105 322 764.

Kesko Corporation

Merja Haverinen
Vice President, Group Communications

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