Code of Conduct of the SOEX Group

Introduction

This Code of Conduct applies to SOEX Textil-Vermarktungsgesellschaft m.b.H. and all its subsidiaries and holdings worldwide (“SOEX”).

It specifies the principles governing all activities at SOEX. The document describes the limits that statutory and company-specific regulations impose on us as SOEX employees. This gives our staff a sense of security and orientation, thus ensuring that they are protected. The Code of Conduct does not cover every conceivable situation we might encounter. However, it serves as a guide to ensure that we always act with integrity.

Every SOEX employee must be familiar with this Code of Conduct. Moreover, every SOEX employee must be acquainted with the statutory regulations, provisions and internal guidelines important for our work. In this way, we can avoid risks or initiate appropriate countermeasures at an early stage.

The Code of Conduct is binding on us all, staff and management alike. Breaches of the Code of Conduct will not be tolerated.

Policy

We comply with all national and international laws.

All employees are obliged to familiarise themselves with the basic laws, regulations and internal rules relevant to their area of responsibility. Comprehensive knowledge is particularly important for managers, whose function or executive position gives them a special responsibility for ensuring compliance (e.g. managing directors or executives in the areas of finance, human resources and legal matters).

If any regulations enforced in individual countries, business areas, markets or vis-à-vis business partners are stricter than those specified in this Code of Conduct, the stricter regulations must take precedence.

Fair and respectful behaviour

Our success is thanks in large part to our culture of mutual respect. We are willing to learn from our mistakes and appreciate candid communication. We comply with basic rules of behaviour to ensure that no staff member is treated unfairly, unprofessionally or disrespectfully, discriminated against or subjected to harassment.
We strive to ensure that our staff is as diverse as our customer base. We make decisions on the basis of criteria such as competence, performance and behaviour at work, and not on the basis of ethnicity, nationality, sex, age, physical attributes, social origin, disability, trade union membership, religion, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity or any other criterion that is prohibited by law.

We also avoid treating people differently on the basis of such attributes – whether consciously or unconsciously.

We treat each other with respect. This applies both to colleagues and to third parties such as customers, suppliers and officials. Bullying and all kinds of harassment are forbidden.

Human rights

SOEX respects human rights and children’s rights at every location – both internally and throughout our external sphere of influence. Our standards require all our staff worldwide to behave fairly and lawfully towards colleagues, business partners and neighbours. We are bound to respect human rights. The same applies to our direct supply chain.
SOEX condemns every form of forced labour and respects the principle of freely chosen employment. This specifically includes upholding the fundamental right to freedom of occupation. Employees have the right to terminate their employment at any time provided due notice is given.

Environmental protection

SOEX collects, sorts, recycles and markets new and used textiles and shoes worldwide. The keywords re-wear, reuse, recycle and research are the pillars of our ‘zero waste’ philosophy. Our goal is to keep 100 percent of used textiles in the production cycle as far as possible, thus conserving natural resources and reducing waste.

As a commercial enterprise, we are responsible for environmental compatibility and the sustainability of our actions, locations and services.

Right from the production phase, we ensure that natural resources are used sparingly, that negative effects on the environment are minimised and that the relevant environmental protection laws and regulations are complied with.

Our collecting company SOEX Collecting Germany GmbH is certified as a specialist waste management company. [A1]SOEX Processing Germany GmbH has certificates confirming its status as a specialist disposal operation and its compliance with ISO 50001. SOEX Recycling Germany GmbH is certified in accordance with GRS (Global Recycled Standard) and ISO 50001. All certificates are renewed on a regular basis.

Ban on corruption

Corruption is a serious problem in commercial transactions. It causes decisions to be made on improper grounds, prevents progress and innovation, distorts competition and is harmful to society. Corruption is forbidden. It can lead to fines for SOEX and punitive sanctions for the staff involved.

The quality of the products and services offered by our company is the key to our success. SOEX tolerates neither the offering or taking of bribes in any form, nor the accepting or granting of advantages. We only grant privileges to business partners, customers or other external third parties within the framework permitted by law.

Ban on money laundering and the financing of terrorism

Almost every country in the world has laws against money laundering and the financing of terrorism. Money laundering occurs when funds or other assets derived directly or indirectly from criminal activities are put into legal economic circulation, thus disguising their origin. The financing of terrorism occurs when funds or other means are made available to promote terrorist offences or support terrorist organisations. A party's liability for money laundering does not depend on them being aware that the legal transaction or monetary transfer in question involved the laundering of monies. This means that even unintentional participation in money laundering can result in grave penalties.

We carefully investigate the identity of customers, business partners and other third parties with whom we wish to do business. These investigations are repeated at regular intervals. It is our avowed goal to only maintain business relationships with reputable partners whose business activities comply with legal regulations and whose resources are legitimate in origin. Incoming payments are allocated to the corresponding services and booked accordingly. We ensure that our cash flows are transparent and open.

Export control

Cross-border trade is subject to prohibitions, restrictions, licensing requirements and other supervisory measures as specified by export control regulations. Along with actual export transactions, the regulations also encompass temporary exports such as the transport of objects and technical drawings on business trips as well as technical transfers, for example by e-mail or Cloud. Notwithstanding any delivery transactions, it is also forbidden to engage in business transactions with any persons or companies on sanctions lists.

We ensure that all regulations governing imports and exports are complied with. We also observe limits on payment and other financial transactions with sanctioned persons, companies or organisations.

Occupational health and safety

SOEX takes its responsibility for the health and safety of its staff very seriously. We guarantee our employees’ health and safety at work as specified in the applicable national regulations and on the basis of the company's health and safety policy. Moreover, we regularly instruct our employees in occupational health and safety issues, fire protection, and waste management.

We maintain and promote the health, performance and job satisfaction of our employees by continually improving working conditions and implementing a variety of preventive and health promotion measures.

Data protection

The global electronic interchange of information is a critical factor in the success of a business. However, for all its advantages, electronic communication does bring with it considerable [A2]privacy and data security risks.

The treatment of personal data is subject to special statutory regulations to ensure that each person's privacy is protected. In principle, personal data may only be collected, stored, processed and otherwise used with the consent of the person concerned or on the basis of a contractual clause or other legal provision.

We protect the personal data of staff, former employees, customers, suppliers and other persons affected. We only collect, record, process, use and store personal data in strict compliance with statutory regulations, in particular the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Monitoring adherence to the Code of Conduct; complaints procedure

You can report violations of the SOEX Code of Conduct at any time, either anonymously or non-anonymously.

We ask that persons reporting violations only do so in good faith, ensuring that, to the best of their knowledge, the information provided is correct.

Non-anonymous reports are to be submitted to
Axel Buchholz, CEO 

Tel.: +49 4102 4545-200
Email: compliance@soex.de*

For anonymous reports please use the contact form below. Many thanks.


 

*If you have questions about our data processing, please click here.