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Story | 01/19/2016 12:22:00

UN invites UPM to join a group of world's top 50 sustainability leaders

UPM has accepted a special invitation to join the United Nations Global Compact LEAD as of 1 January 2016. UPM is the first forest industry company and also the first Finnish company ever to receive such an invitation.

Global Compact LEAD is a unique leadership platform within the United Nations Global Compact that strongly promotes the integration of sustainability into business strategies. At the moment the 50 most sustainably advanced companies across geographical regions and industry sectors have been invited to LEAD. The total number of member companies at UN Global Compact is approximately 8000.

”UPM’s invitation is a recognition of the company’s industry-leading sustainability practices and long-standing commitment to the UN Global Compact,” says Lise Kingo, Executive Director of Global Compact. 

Participating in LEAD offers UPM an opportunity to receive global recognition alongside fellow its sustainability leaders, clearly demonstrating the contribution that great companies can make to advance the global Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs). The criteria for LEAD are very strict and only the most advanced companies can be invited. We are very pleased to welcome UPM to UN Global Compact LEAD!

Pirkko Harrela, Executive Vice President, Stakeholder Relations, UPM: The invitation is a great recognition for UPM’s long term commitment. For us, joining LEAD will be a great opportunity to stay abreast of developments within the industry and to generate and implement advanced corporate sustainability practices together with other sustainability leaders and committed stakeholders.

Our expectation is that LEAD is a well-managed operation with clear targets and good planning. With this in mind, we look forward to good co-operation both with the LEAD management and the peer companies.

What does it mean to be in LEAD?

Guiding the transformation of business everywhere requires innovation, experimentation and genuine leadership. By bringing companies together with relevant experts and stakeholders, Global Compact LEAD provides a collaborative space for member companies to fully integrate sustainability into their core business and operations.

Through LEAD, companies have an opportunity to foster close collaboration with investors, business schools and UN agencies and to facilitate proactive engagement with governments, NGOs and other key stakeholders.

LEAD also offers its network the UN and UN Global Compact’s unique position that helps them to shape the ever-evolving expectations of corporate sustainability. Most of all, it provides leadership, inspiration and examples of good practices.

By joining LEAD, companies commit to implement the Blueprint for Corporate Sustainability Leadership and to share related outcomes and experiences. The Blueprint is a model for leadership within the Global Compact that is designed to inspire advanced performers.

What next?

According to LEAD practice, the companies decide on their annual priorities with regard to projects within LEAD. During the spring, on-going and future co-projects will be evaluated and discussed with other LEAD members and an action plan will be formulated based on the outcome of these discussions. For more information, please contact Päivi Salpakivi-Salomaa, VP, Environment and Responsibility, UPM.