KEA has aggressively pursued expansion into emerging markets as well as developed economies to make it possible for all consumers to take advantage Of its products and enjoy life through its furnishings. It is in constant search Of new ideas, designs, functionality, testing and enabling people to assemble its products on their own and to keep shopping at KEA retail outlets around the world. Stitching ANGINA Foundation became the owner Of the new ‘The KEA Group” to expand the market and concept of KEA to as many places as possible.
Through aggressive expansion plan KEA now has nearly 330 stores n 40 countries and as many as 1 50,000 co-workers. It is on track to open additional through expansion in new and existing markets to have 500 stores by year 2020. KEA likes to present itself as principled, environmentally conscious, and socially responsible company. Its products that are sourced from others must follow the ‘KEA WAY, which is set of regulations for its suppliers around the world. These rules require that manufacturers provide annual report on origin, type of wood used and sourcing of the wood in making the products.
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In addition, it makes sure labor used in making the products meet the fair read guidelines set by international regulations. KEA also follows the UN Convention and guidelines on child labor and if any manufacturer is found to be using child labor is asked to suspend the practice immediately otherwise the contract with that producer is terminated. II – Ethical Models KEA in becoming a behemoth retailer of low cost, stylish furniture to all does it follow or have the capacity to insure its business practice meets KEA or UN guidelines on ethical business practices and social responsibility.
The first major area of concern from an environmentalist’s point is excessive racketing and encouragement of mass-consumption of furniture items that are not long lasting and need replacement in just few short years. Selling products that need replacement in just a few years puts significant strain on world’s wood resources. Additionally, it is a cause of concern when it enters new emerging markets, what steps it takes to make sure it’s employees utilize both environmentally and socially responsible business practices.
In the case Of KEA operating in Russia, it failed to follow its own business practices and fell victim to bribery practice that is common in former Soviet Republic. KEA does overall attempt to meet the UN Global Compact practices by: 1) Making sure it protects, respects and supports human rights. 2) That they are not complicit and ignorant in human rights abuses. 3) Upholding the freedom of association and recognition of the rights of collective bargaining. 4) Elimination of all practices of forced and mandated labor. 5) Effectively checking to make sure child labor was not used. ) No discrimination is allowed at any of its suppliers or manufacturers. 7) Practicing environmental consciousness 8) Initiatives to become more environmentally response able. ) Continues to develop and utilize environmentally responsible business practices 10) Work against corruption, bribery and extortion in all their forms. KEA needs to effectively promote these principles in the stores it operates, but also needs to make sure all of its suppliers, manufacturers, and vendors regardless of their origin follow the LLC principles.
However, KEA has failed in some respect in its ability to control and make sure itself abides by these principles. KEA in business to generate profit is expanding rapidly in both developing and emerging markets. In an attempt to generate more and more profit it markets, inexpensive products that may originate from sustainable resources but at the same time it encourages excessive consumption, it is often located in remote areas with very large footprint.
Products with limited life cycle need replacement more frequently and consumers more often than not end up purchasing far more than they needed when they come to KEA. It is designed to be consumer friendly, stylish rooms set up for one to visualize placement of furniture at home and if needed available staff to help you in landing and placement of your furniture. Most recently in February 201 3, case of embarrassment came from its food service where it was found the “Swedish Meatballs” it served contained horseman.
Corruption and bribery case in Russia was an awakening experience for KEA In 2010, its top two managers were fired due to bribery of contractors to provide electricity power supply generators to its stores to avoid power shortage. Knowingly it allowed payments of bribery to secure electricity supply, which was a blow to its reputation as ethical business practice around the world. However, it is often understood bribery and corruption is pervasive in Russia and cannot be avoided.
Second instance of corruption for KEA in Russia happened when in July 2012, when a Turkish national Mr.. Joan Yuan, was sentenced to 5 years in prison for bribery with KEA MOSS Russian subsidiary Head of the Leasing Department Mr.. Carl Olla Installations. Mr.. Installations fled the country prior to capture. In addition, same year global environmental agencies became aware of Kike’s use of poorly written Russian logging rules where old growth trees were being cut down. This caused people to question Kike’s environmental conscious and socially responsible policies.
Ill – Solutions KEA must institute effective immediately, employment policies where each co-worker signs on to adhere to its policies in respect to being environmentally and socially responsible to avoid any further embarrassment to its image. In addition, it should create an Internal Audit Department hereby referred to as AD, MUST annually review and pay surprise visits to inspect, check and confirm each division for possible corruption and practices that is against its policies.
Similarly, it needs to slow down its expansion plan in pursuit of entering every market to drive even further profits. It is immoral for KEA on all grounds to project an image of environmentally and socially responsible company when in fact it is failing to control its employees’ behavior. Corruption and bribery as well as practices for its suppliers must be kept in check and punished equally across the board to avoid any further damage.
IV – Optimal Solution Optimal solution, I believe to be implementing DAD where co-workers visit each subsidiary along with outside party inspectors annually and review top management and check for possible abuse of its practices. DAD co-workers must not remain in same position for more than three years and during their tenure should not visit or given the opportunity to inspect same KEA subsidiary more than once. Outside inspectors when used in conjunction with its own IA) co-workers will be able to inspect and assure top management at each subsidiary accounts for its actions and business practices.
More importantly it should display in large print within its corporate, subsidiaries and local retail outlets a sign promoting anti corruption and bribery will not e tolerated and prosecuted if anyone is found to be guilty. According to Transparency International 2012 report Russia is still among the top five developed countries in the world for corruption and pervasive bribery. In fact it is accepted to be the norm in all of the CICS countries or former Soviet Republics and is understood to be acceptable if you want to get things accomplished through the highly bureaucratic systems.
KEA must be patient in its expansion plans in Russia as well as CICS countries and be willing to reap the benefits systematically via long-term investments. KEA with its set of reminisces must continue to promote environmental and social responsibility to community and countries it operates in. It must serve as a role model to all companies coming into Russia and wanting to take advantage of market opportunities for the goods or services it sells. V- Conclusion In summary, KEA is an environmentally and socially responsible company.
However, it must not forget the problems and issues of both sustainability and social responsibility in pursuit of profit at all cost. Its problems in Russia, may very well happen in other places as well end it must be persistent to remote its environmental and social culture to everywhere it operates in. In addition, the concept of low-price, functional, stylish and modern furniture pieces should be pursued in products that are long lasting, rather than have a several year life cycle as it does now.
After all, being environmentally and socially responsible company also means to cut down as little trees as possible and this can only be achieved through furniture offerings that last long time and are built to last. Although KEA does attempt to incorporate environmentally responsible products in its buildings through adaptation of alarm energy and other resources it uses, it should not shy away from densely populated areas where shoppers will not have to drive long distances and promote overall health and well being of everyone in the world.