Mulberry is an English design company renowned world-wide for its craftsmanship and quality. The brand's backbone is an extensive line of luxury fashion bags for men and women that combine stylish, stand-out design with the finest leathers and detailing. In addition to leather goods, Mulberry's product range includes womenswear, accessories and footwear.
The Group's principal activities are the design and manufacture or sourcing of products and their subsequent sale through wholesale channels or the Group’s own shops in home and export markets.
The Group trades internationally either directly through its own retail stores or through direct wholesale customers and partners. Its operations are largely based in the United Kingdom.
We have two large head offices in the UK, in Somerset and London. We also have two UK factories based in Somerset, known as The Rookery and The Willows.
Mulberry Group plc is an AIM listed company (registration number 1180514). The company is registered in England and Wales and the registered address is:
Mulberry Group plc The Rookery, Chilcompton, Bath, Somerset BA3 4EH England
Mulberry Group plc is subject to the UK City Code on Takeovers and Mergers.
Please note, this section of the website contains information required to be disclosed by Rule 26 of the AIM Rules for Companies.
The Board is responsible for formulating, reviewing and approving the Group’s strategy; in addition it has overall responsibility for the budgets and corporate actions. The Board recognises the importance of high standards of corporate governance and supports the principles contained in the Revised Code, applying them where they consider them appropriate to Mulberry Group plc.
Nominations And Remuneration Committee
The Nominations and Remuneration Committee is chaired by a Non-Executive Director, Chris Roberts. The Committee is responsible for determining the remuneration and terms and conditions of employment of Executive Directors and senior employees of the Group.
The Audit Committee is chaired by a Non-Executive Director, Steven Grapstein. The Committee may examine any matters relating to the financial affairs of the Group. This includes review of the annual financial statements prior to their approval by the Board, together with accounting policies and compliance with accounting standards, and of internal control procedures and monthly financial reporting, and other related functions as the Committee may require. The Non-Executive Directors have access to the Group's auditors and legal advisers at any time without Executive Directors being present.
Thierry Andretta, 60, was appointed as Chief Executive on 7 April 2015, following his appointment to the Board as an independent Non-Executive Director on 9 June 2014. He has previously held a number of senior roles at brands including Lanvin, Moschino, the Gucci Group, LVMH Fashion Group and Céline and was Chief Executive of Buccellati. He is also a non-executive director of SCI TMLS, and was until recently a non-executive director of Buccellati Holdings Italia Spa (resigned 31 May 2016) and Acne Studios Holding AB. Although not a director, he is also a senior adviser to the Board of Nirav Modi Firestar Diamond Limited.
Neil Ritchie FCA, 46, is the Chief Financial Officer, having joined Mulberry on 16 May 2016. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales having trained professionally with PriceWaterhouseCoopers. He spent 15 years with Dyson in various financial and commercial roles across the UK, Europe, Noth America and Asia, most recently as Global Commercial Finance Director. He was appointed as a Director on 16 May 2016.
Godfrey Davis FCA, 68, relinquished his interim Chief Executive role on 7 April 2015 following the appointment of Thierry Andretta but continues in his role as Chairman. He was appointed Chairman in June 2012. Prior to this he had performed the role of Chief Executive from 2002 until June 2012. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and joined Mulberry as Group Finance Director in 1987 after 15 years at Arthur Andersen, where he was an international partner. He is a director of Pittards plc, Princedale Development Limited, King's Schools Taunton Limited, Hestercombe Gardens Limited, KST International Limited (appointed 26 August 2015) and a trustee of Hestercombe Gardens Trust.
Andrew Christopher Roberts FCCA, 54, was appointed as Chairman of the Nominations and Remuneration Committee on 7 May 2013. He was appointed to the Board on 6 June 2002. He is a fellow of the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants. He is Managing Director of Como Holdings (UK) Ltd which has retail, hotel and real estate operations in the UK and was formerly Finance Director of an AIM listed financial services group. Como Holdings (UK) Ltd is a company ultimately owned by Mr Ong Beng Seng and Mrs Christina Ong.
Steven Grapstein CPA, 59, was appointed as a Director on 17 November 2003 and was appointed as Chairman of the Audit Committee on 7 May 2013. He is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Como Holdings USA Inc., an international investment group with extensive interests in the retail and hospitality industries. Como Holdings USA Inc. is ultimately owned by Mr Ong Beng Seng and Mrs Christina Ong. He also serves on the board of directors of Urban Edge, a US publicly listed company on the NY Stock Exchange and is the Chairman of its Governance Committee. In November 2015, he was appointed as a member of the Board of Directors of David Yurman Enterprises LLC, a maker of luxury fine jewellery and timepieces, a privately held company with 30 retail locations in the USA and over 360 locations worldwide. He serves on the Audit Committee and as Chairman of the Governance Committee for this company. Steven served for 23 years as a member of the Board of Directors (1992-2015) and as Chairman of the Board (2010-2015) of Tesoro Corporation, a US publicly held Fortune 100 company engaged in the oil and gas industry. He also served as Chief Executive Officer (1994-2005) and Chairman of Presidio International dba A/X Armani Exchange, a fashion retail company until its sale on 15 May 2014.
Melissa Ong, 43, was appointed on 7 September 2010. She is currently Director of Activities at Como Hotels and Resorts, a company ultimately owned by Mr Ong Beng Seng and Mrs Christina Ong, overseeing the experiential element of hospitality in each destination. She is a director/manager of Mojo Partners Ltd, an investment holding company, a director of Will Focus Ltd and a director of Club 21 (Singapore) Pte Ltd, which is ultimately owned by Mr Ong Beng Seng and Mrs Christina Ong.
Christophe Cornu, 53, was appointed on 7 May 2013 and is an independent Non-Executive Director. He is CEO of Nestle Suisse SA, having previously been Chief Commercial Officer for Nestle Nespresso SA.
Julie Gilhart, 59, was appointed on 1 December 2014 and is an independent Non-Executive Director. She is a creative business consultant whose clients include Amazon.com, LVMH, Kering and others. Previously Ms Gilhart was the Senior Vice President, Fashion Director at Barneys New York for 18 years where she was involved in all aspects of fashion brand building, marketing and business direction. She is a founder of Fashion Girls for Humanity, serves as a member of the Board of Governors at Parsons/ New School and is on the board of Kelly Slater’s company Outerknown LLC.
Kate Anthony Wilkinson, LLB, is a qualified Solicitor and member of the Law Society of England & Wales. Previously an Associate with a large Solicitors firm, Kate moved in-house and has held senior legal positions, including as General Counsel and company secretary, of a number of multi-national companies, including Alcan. Kate joined Mulberry as Head of Group Legal in 2011 and was appointed Company Secretary on 17th August 2011.
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Corporate Social Responsibility
Our approach to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is based on a simple principle: that Mulberry will make a positive difference to its people, the environment and the communities in which it works. We actively encourage our employees to find new ways of meeting our wider responsibilities, and as a company have focused our initiatives in six key areas:
- Climate change
- Reducing waste
- Fair partners
- Animal welfare
- Community involvement
- Health and wellbeing
Our CSR strategy is agreed at the highest level in the company. The CSR team coordinates strategic work streams in collaboration with relevant departments and reports regularly to the Management Board.
People & Fair Partners
In 2006 we took on our first apprentices through a new Government approved scheme supported by Skillset UK and Bridgwater College. The year-long training course, comprising a leather skills NVQ and technical certificate, sets young apprentices on the path to becoming accomplished craftsmen and craftswomen. In the nine years since we started, more than 80 apprentices have completed the course. Some of these apprentices have gone on to apply their skills and knowledge to different roles in the company for example product development, planning and market support.
As a result of the success of the programme, we have a waiting list of young people aspiring to join our production line team.
The programme has also received national recognition. In February 2010, we were proud to receive the National Skills Award, given to acknowledge excellence and world class performance in manufacturing. In 2014 we received the Business in the Community Big Tick Award in the Inspiring Young Talent category.
We are proud to produce over 50% of our leather goods in our British factories, The Rookery and The Willows. Mulberry is the largest manufacturer of luxury goods in the UK and employs over 550 people between the two factories.
We also work with a select group of suppliers elsewhere in the UK and overseas. We expect these suppliers to create a suitable environment for their workers, and ask them to adhere to a set of standards called the Mulberry Global Sourcing Principles. We are committed to enforcing these standards though regular inspections of supplier facilities by our own employees and by third-party auditors.
Investing in the latest technologies, along with awareness raising activities among employees, are just two methods we are using to help reduce our energy consumption. Both of our UK factories have rainwater harvesting for grey water use, and we have solar thermal panels to heat the water at our Chilcompton factory. At our Bridgwater factory, the Willows, the installation of 290m² solar panels will generate power for approximately 10% of the site’s energy needs.
Mulberry worked with specialist energy auditors to carry out for site energy audits in 2014/15 across our office, factory, warehouse and retail sites to comply with the government's Energy Saving Opportunities Scheme. The report found that 'a significant amount of work has already been completed to improve efficiency' but that across the estate 'lighting, heating and cooling are significant energy users and should be examined closely for energy saving opportunities.' A number of energy saving measures were identified, with opportunities for Mulberry to save over 10% of our total energy spend.
Animal Welfare & Biodiversity
We are committed to ethical practices in the catching, maintaining, breeding, raising, transportation, handling, and slaughter of animals in our leather, fur and exotic skins supply chains.
We are committed to sustaining well-functioning and bio-diverse ecosystems in the regions where we source. This includes maintaining species populations of wild animals at sustainable levels as well as to only source material of animal origin from legal sources.
We collect traceability information on all our leather articles, so we know if we can trace it to the farm, to the abattoir or to the country of origin. Traceability is the tool by which we can understand the wider environmental and social impacts in our leather supply chain, including animal welfare, land use impacts and how the leather was made.
Since 2014 Mulberry has made annual disclosures to the CDP Forests Program on our forest-risk commodity purchasing practices.
We carry out research on welfare issues on the various materials we source, and the regions where we source from, also collaborating on research with the Sustainable Luxury Working Group, a group of companies that produce luxury goods and that share a commitment to advancing good social, environmental and animal welfare practices in their operations.
We recycle as much material as possible from our UK sites. We have set up a number of partnerships with scrap stores local to our Somerset factories, passing on a significant quantity of our leather off-cuts to community arts and crafts groups. We are actively seeking other upcycling and recycling opportunities for our leather offcuts.
Mulberry actively donates money, product and support to charities in our local community and across the wider industry. In addition each year our employees select 2 charities to offer additional support through matching employee fundraising and raising employee awareness for these charities and their causes. Our 2017/18 charities are:
Shelter from the Storm.
Established in 2007 as a response to the increasing levels of homelessness and destitution on the streets of London, their mission is to house and support the homeless in London whoever they are. Shelter from the Storm is a completely free emergency night shelter providing bed, dinner and breakfast for 43 homeless people in London every night of the year.
Time is Precious.
Time is Precious is a voluntary run charity, started in 2011 when founders Neil and Nicky Halford‘s son Ben sadly died from cancer. The aim of the charity is to help create a more comfortable and relaxed atmosphere for children and their families whilst they are receiving treatment and care in the hospitals local to our Somerset sites—Bath RUH, Bristol Children’s and Yeovil.
The Modern Slavery Act 2015/California Transparency in Supply Chains Act 2010
UK Modern Slavery Act 2015 ("UK Act")
Under the UK Act, companies providing goods and services with a turnover of £36m or more are obliged to publish an annual Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement setting out the steps the company has taken to ensure slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in its supply chain or its own business.
California Transparency in Supply Chains Act 2010 (SB-657) ("California Act")
Under the California Act, companies of a certain size doing business in the State of California are obliged to disclose their efforts to eradicate slavery and human trafficking from their direct product supply chains for the goods that they offer for sale.
Mulberry Group PLC’s Disclosure requirements under the UK Modern Slavery Act 2015 and California Transparency in Supply Chains Act 2010 for the financial year 2015/16
All of Mulberry’s supplier relationships are governed by Mulberry’s Global Sourcing Principles which includes the absolute prohibition of forced or bonded labour. In this disclosure we explain in more detail how we apply this policy in practice through good governance practices.