Consumers like Corporate Social Responsibility: more and more people are buying products from sustainable companies

Sustainable innovation at the centre of Autogrill’s Corporate Social Responsibility event

  • On 17-18 September, companies, institutions and start-ups from will meet in Milan to share best practice and innovative projects at an event celebrating tens years of sustainability reporting, entitled “Autogrill 10 – Ten Years of Sustainability Looking to the Future”
Thursday, September 17, 2015 - 11:03

The term Corporate Social Responsibility is still not widely known by the general public, especially in Italy, but the positive effects of sustainability policies on consumers and businesses are increasingly tangible. This emerged from an IPSOS survey, “Corporate Social Responsibility seen by public opinion and business”, presented at an event organized by Autogrill in Milan on 17 and 18 September to celebrate the 10th anniversary’s of its sustainability report: “Autogrill 10 – Ten Years of Sustainability Looking to the Future. Business and Sustainability: Opportunities and Developments”.

Adopting a sustainable long-term development model is no longer a purely ethical choice but good business sense. Social responsibility improves an enterprise’s reputation and economic and financial results. According to the IPSOS survey in fact, 43% of the sample interviewed said that CSR influenced their purchasing choices, the figure reaching 64% among those declaring knowledge of these issues. Globally speaking, 55% of consumers are willing to pay a higher price for a product or service offered by a company committed to CSR initiatives, whereas in Italy the percentage rises to 62%. Effects are tangible amongst consumers but also the other internal stakeholders, ie. employees: 46% of companies said that CSR initiatives improved the climate within their organization.

The number of companies which have launched sustainability projects, particularly environmental, has increased in recent years despite the crisis. There is a fast growing trend in emerging markets too and amongst the younger generations, who are increasingly sensitive to companies’ choices in the areas of waste reduction, energy efficiency and the development of human resources.

So CSR proves to be a competitive lever for the growth and development of modern business. For Autogrill, awareness of this led to the drawing up of its first Sustainability Report in 2005. In the last ten years the Group has consolidated its leadership in the travel f&b sector through best practice and avant-garde projects in the field of sustainable innovation across its entire sphere of action: products, people and the environment.

In 2007, its commitment to developing and promoting a sustainable business model was translated into a long-term strategy - “Afuture” – to guide its business on an international level. Within the framework of this international experimentation lab, in 2011, Autogrill drew up a Sustainability Roadmap for 2012-2015, with improvement targets in three strategic areas: AProduct, APeople, APlanet.