S.E.E.D.S. Around the world
Country Manager Mario Opačak has set up a sustainability strategy for the Croatian sales company. Based on S.E.E.D.S. as a Group-wide strategy and suited perfectly for Croatia.
The NSC in Croatia started by analysing its status for each of the four subject areas and then defined certain goals which it wants to reach by 2020. This is largely done through specific projects: for instance, reducing its carbon footprint, making the office building self-sufficient in terms of electric power, etc. Some of this has been realised already. The photovoltaic system has now been up and running since January 2016, and although the building is not yet carbon-neutral, it is already independent of any external power supply. An electric car, too, is now in use and can be recharged right outside the company’s doorstep. The charging station is also available to customers. Although this service has not met with any demand yet, electric mobility is a major point of discussion in Croatia and is generously supported by the state, says the Country Manager.
But why should the Group-wide sustainability strategy be adapted in Croatia?
“Because it suits us,” Mario Opačak repeats. “Obviously, we, as Vaillant, are ahead of our time here in Croatia. But that’s precisely what it’s all about. We’re market leaders and we’re always ahead of the pack. We were the first ones to create a customer loyalty programme, to offer a training centre and a mobile information centre, to run a free customer hotline, a YouTube channel, a special training centre on renewable energies, etc. We are pioneers. And that includes this area, in particular. It’s important that the term sustainability should become meaningful in Croatia – and this hasn’t happened yet.” The strategy is particularly well served by Green iQ products, launched in early 2016, which are being supported through numerous media, including new ones.
The goal: green through and through
One major step has already been taken: On 16 September, the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, the company held the first Vaillant Green Day. As part of a full and varied schedule, the approx. 60 trade partners and representatives from politics, business, environmental associations and press became acquainted with the programme’s key points across six different stations. They were able to see and learn about the photovoltaic system on the building’s roof and the four aroTHERM heat pumps that heat and cool the building. At other stations, the guests familiarised themselves with the Green iQ products and calculated their own green intelligence quotient by taking the test featured in the Green IQ study. The German ambassador to Croatia, Thomas E. Schultze, opened the event as guest of honour.