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Strategy

Our vision is to deliver leading performance based on our five main chemical platforms by driving profitable growth in selected markets. Our expected outcomes for 2015 are to achieve a return on sales level of 12 percent and a return on investment of 15 percent. We came close to meeting our 2015 return on investment expectations in 2014 and are on track to meet both expected outcomes. We are also making progress on our five main action areas: Actions Build on our strong chemical platforms Given the asset intensity of our business, we have to carefully prioritize our capital allocation against the most promising growth opportunities. We have identified two strategic [...]

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Strategy

Our vision is to be the leading coatings company from a performance perspective. Our expected outcomes for 2015 are to achieve a return on sales level of 12 percent and a return on investment of 25 percent. We are on track to deliver on these expectations, as evidenced by our 2014 financial results. In 2014, we introduced a simplified and leaner organizational structure. This new structure has reduced the number of global management layers, which in turn will enhance decision-making efficiency and improve our customer focus, while at the same time reducing costs. We also continue to progress in our three main action areas: Actions Drive overarching performance [...]

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Our strategy

Core principles and values Our core principles and values define the culture and behaviors that we are committed to embedding throughout AkzoNobel. Read our core principles and values Strategic focus areas As part of the corporate strategy development process we carried out in 2012, we identified five key focus areas. The following is a brief description of accomplishments in 2014, along with plans for 2015 and beyond for each of the five areas. Read our strategic focus areas Processes and capabilities In 2014, we made substantial progress in codifying our company-wide core processes by developing supporting toolkits and including our processes in our corporate [...]

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Strategy

Our vision is to become the leading global decorative paints company in size and performance. We are on track to achieve our expected 2015 financial outcomes of 7.5 percent return on sales and 12 percent return on investment, as evidenced by our 2014 performance, which was a significant improvement over 2013 levels. In addition, we have also successfully “gone live” with our new operating model in Europe, which includes a comprehensive and disciplined process-based approach designed to improve both efficiency and effectiveness. We also continue to make progress in our five main action areas: Actions Fix Europe Given the structural issues in the Buildings and [...]

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Note 1: Managing our sustainability agenda

Strategic focus Our sustainability agenda incorporates economic, environmental and social aspects across the value chain. By focusing on the full value chain, we will drive business, resource and engagement benefits The importance of sustainability to running our business is firmly integrated into the AkzoNobel strategy. As well as being a strategic focus area, it is one of the three core principles (safety, integrity and sustainability) that provide the foundation for our company values. In addition, sustainability is being embedded into our new company-wide processes, including Innovation, Commercial excellence and Talent management. Sustainability helps us to [...]

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Report of the Supervisory Board

[...] The Supervisory Board has continued to take an active role in reviewing and discussing the company’s strategy and strategic options together with the CEO, the CFO and the Executive Committee. In 2014, the Supervisory Board’s strategy review included a comprehensive Business Area analysis of forward-looking targets and detailed action plans. Specific project-oriented reviews were also undertaken. In terms of functional aspects of the company’s work, strategy updates were provided from Human Resources, Global Business Services and Sustainability. These reviews were in addition to the Supervisory Board’s broad and high level review of strategy and risk for the [...]

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Overview of risks

[...] in turn could result in the company not realizing its financial targets. Mitigating actions Execute our strategy to bring down our operational cost base and reduce complexity Continue the implementation of Global Business Services aimed at standardized core functional processes in all regions across the organization Further deploy the commercial excellence programs to capture organic growth and offset the effects of decreasing economic growth rates International operations We are a global business with operations in more than 80 countries. We are therefore exposed to a variety of risks, many of them beyond our control. Unfavorable political, social or economic [...]

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Note 2: Reporting principles

[...] The topics in this Report 2014 were selected on the basis of the sustainability aspects of our strategy, the GRI G4 guidelines and input from various external stakeholders. These include our engagement with: Shareholders Customers Employees Rating organizations, notably RobecoSAM – the rating agency for the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices – and the Carbon Disclosure Project Sustainability organizations such as the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), Forum for the Future and the International Integrated Reporting Council Reporting process and assurance The reporting period is 2014. Data has mainly been obtained from our financial [...]

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Note 15: Post-retirement benefit provisions

[...] which are periodically subject to review for compliance with the pension fund’s investment strategy. ICIPF invested in annuity contracts in 2014 that aim to hedge all key risks related to a certain part of the pensioner population and CPS has an insurance contract with SwissRe to hedge longevity risk in respect of a portion of its pensioners. In line with our proactive pension risk management strategy, we seek to reduce risk in our pension plans over time. We continue to evaluate different potential de-risking strategies and opportunities on an ongoing basis. Some future de-risking transactions may have both cash flow and balance sheet impacts which may be [...]

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Supervisory Board Chairman’s statement

2014 has been a year of transition for the company and a year of advancement in pursuance of the company’s strategy. Despite challenging global and macro-economic circumstances we have sought to build on our successes to date, including our top ranking in the Materials industry group of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for the third year in succession. Following the completion of Karel Vuursteen’s 12-year term of office as member of the Supervisory Board, I was appointed as Chairman in April, 2014. At the same time, as part of our succession planning for the replacement of Sir Peter Ellwood – who stepped down after six years as Supervisory Board and Audit [...]

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