If you’ve noticed plenty of excitement in the sustainability community over the last day or so, that’s because the new Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) rankings have been announced.

Thousands of companies are assessed each year and we’re proud to be among the leaders for the 13th consecutive year. It’s recognition of the long-term value we create for all our stakeholders, while our consistently strong performance is a clear signal that we’re always looking to improve.

We use independent ratings such as the DJSI as a benchmark. It gives us objective insights into our performance and enables us to assess ourselves against the best of the competition. There’s no room for complacency, however, so we’re looking beyond rankings, because we’re on a journey which requires us to look further and climb higher. Our stakeholders don’t want us to stand still – and neither do we.

Taking this broader view involves measuring our success in terms of the return for our business partners, employees and society as a whole, because we are dependent on all our stakeholders. That’s why we focus on the economic, environmental and social issues that are material to our business success.

In particular, we’ve adopted a sharper and more deliberate focus on the resource productivity of our operations, and on innovation to drive value selling. With resource productivity, we are creating a culture of care for all materials used, while eliminating waste. With value selling, we drive sales and growth through product portfolios designed to bring tangible benefits and deliver positive social and environmental impact.

And it’s our employees who have inspired this ongoing success. We have been recognized as a company of leaders, with a talent for inspiring our peers and business partners – which is a source of great pride.

I’m a firm believer that sustainability is business, and business is sustainability. So it should come as no surprise that sustainability sits proudly at the heart of everything we do at AkzoNobel. We work hard every day to deliver value for customers so we can create a sustainable future together.

Thanks to this ongoing commitment, we’re widely acknowledged as a leader in our industry, reflected by our performance in many of the world’s most prestigious sustainability rankings, in addition to the DJSI. For example, we’re also listed on leading sustainability indices such as the Carbon Disclosure Project, Sustainalytics, FTSE4Good, EcoVadis and Corporate Knights. While it’s an honor to be recognized, we won’t stop improving. We’ll continue to take our industry forward and ensure that sustainability remains firmly at the forefront of all we do.

André Veneman, Corporate Director Sustainability AkzoNobel