As all of us at Tiffany & Co. reflect on 175 years of extraordinary growth and accomplishment, we are reminded how critically important the core principles to which we have always been committedextraordinary design, impeccable craftsmanship and a rewarding customer experienceare to our success. These core principles of Charles Lewis Tiffany helped set Tiffany & Co. apart from all other jewelers and today remain the foundation of our success.
Over the past 15 years, our Company has made a strong, industry-leading commitment to socially and environmentally responsible business practices. This commitment has now taken its appropriate place alongside those historic core principles as a critical component of our continued success. Integrated throughout our business model, this commitment eagerly anticipates the challenges and embraces the opportunities that are a part of responsible corporate behavior.
Through our initiatives to ensure the protection of the environment, respect for human rights and support for the communities in which we operate, we conduct our business in a manner we all can be proud of. Those practices have become an integral part of the Tiffany brand promise. It is not only the right thing to do; it is the smart thing to do. It distinguishes us from our competitors, resonates with our customers and in so doing creates long-term value for our shareholders.
This is our second report on our sustainability and corporate responsibility efforts. Over the past year, a number of issues have become increasingly important to our customers and stakeholders. Globally, the Kimberley Process continues to be tested, and there is a heightened concern about the protection of human rights in the diamond supply chain. The conditions under which precious metals are mined are also of growing concern to governments and consumers. And new mine development continues to threaten some of the planet’s remaining natural treasures. We are proud that progress has been made addressing all these issues, but much more needs to be done.
In addition to our ongoing work with civil society, local communities, other jewelry retailers and mining companies to develop, support and implement higher standards for responsible mining and jewelry manufacturing practices, 2011 witnessed several important developments. Tiffany & Co. joined the United Nations Global Compact to share our commitment to human rights and to operating in an environmentally responsible manner. We continued to reduce the energy used in our manufacturing facilities, stores and offices while testing and implementing more efficient processes, surpassing our goal of reducing our U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 10% per square foot.
In 2011 Tiffany continued its long tradition of supporting charitable organizations. Last year we donated over 2% of pre-tax earnings to charitable purposes, including contributions to The Tiffany & Co. Foundation’s endowment. Philanthropy is a key pillar of our sustainability efforts at Tiffany & Co., and The Tiffany & Co. Foundation plays a critical and central role. The Foundation’s grantmaking focuses on design, coral conservation, urban environments and responsible miningefforts that we are confident will lead, in the long term, to an improved business environment.
Looking forward, in 2012 we plan to enhance our sustainability performance by developing quantitative and process-oriented goals to further embed sustainability into the core competencies of our business. And we will be vocal advocates for issues that concern our customers. High on our list of priorities is the reform of the Kimberley Process to incorporate a broader mandate for the protection of human rights, the development of broadly recognized standards for responsible mining, mining law reform here in the United States and opposition to mine development that threatens areas of high ecological and cultural value. Here I would like to draw your attention to our continued opposition to the Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay, Alaska, and our fervent hope that the Environmental Protection Agencybased on its scientific reviewwill exercise its authority under the Clean Water Act to prohibit this mine’s development.
We are extremely proud of our corporate responsibility accomplishments and of our role as a leader in sustainable luxury, yet we know that there is still much work to be done. On behalf of Tiffany & Co., I invite you to review the content of this website to learn about our social and environmental challenges and accomplishments.
Michael J. Kowalski
Chairman and CEO
Tiffany & Co.