Alliance Boots is a leading international pharmacy-led health and beauty group offering a wide range of products and services to customers by working in close partnership with manufacturers and pharmacists. Their two core business activities are pharmacy-led health, beauty retailing and pharmaceutical wholesaling.
The company is privately-owned and employs over 115,000 people. Its wholesale and distribution network serves over 140,000 pharmacies, doctors, health centres and hospitals from over 370 pharmaceutical wholesale distribution centres in 16 countries. They operate more than 3,200 health and beauty retail stores in nine countries, of which just under 3,000 have a pharmacy.
Alliance Boots seeks to influence the behaviour of its supply chain and promote ethical sourcing of manufacturing supplies. They have created a Supplier Verification Programme assessing that suppliers comply with the Boots Group Code of Conduct for Ethical Trading.
Boots assesses all of its external Boots brand product suppliers. Suppliers are visited by specialist teams who work with the staff, management and trade unions to assess if suitable ethical standards are being met. The findings of the assessments are communicated to all key stakeholders in Alliance Boots. This information is then used to influence future purchasing decisions. Further reports ensure that remediation actions raised from assessments are closed off within agreed timescales and that suppliers continue to comply with the Code.
Boots is one of the most trusted brand names on the high street, with its brand value estimated at £1.2bn. The nature of Boots’ products means that maintaining trust between the customer and the brand is essential to their continuing business success. Issues in the supply chain, such as poor labour standards, or poor environmental practices could have a negative impact on the business.
- The Supplier Verification Programme has so far identified over 2,500 breaches against the Code since it began
- Reduces the risk to the brand
- Resulting in a reduced risk of prosecution for suppliers
- Improves suppliers’ efficiency to deliver product on time
- Suppliers have increased efficiency, reduced overheads and lowered recruitment costs
- Results have shown that the staff of suppliers have increased awareness of their rights and have more empowerment