Kindred adds ‘sustainability council’ to its boardroom duties

Kindred Group Plc has published its ‘2020 Sustainability Report outlining its progress on core objectives related to social responsibility, safer gambling, customer care, employee well-being and corporate governance. 

2020 saw Kindred become the first publicly listed online gambling firm to disclose ‘transparent KPIs’ tracking the percentage of gross-win revenues derived from harmful gambling. 

Transparent KPIs have been added to the Stockholm group’s financial reporting duties, as Kindred marks out its headline objective of achieving ‘zero percent revenue from harmful gambling by 2023.

Corporate governance is confident of achieving its objective whilst Kindred maintains its growth momentum, in which the company achieved a number of business milestones during 2020. 

As it stands, Kindred employs +1,500 staff (62 nationalities) servicing 30 million customers worldwide – a requirement that sees the company fulfil the duties of 14 individual market licences. 

Maintaining its growth trajectory, during 2020 Kindred surpassed £1.1 billion in group gross winnings, recording an average of 46 million customer transactions per day.

Supporting its long-term sustainability objectives and social responsibility duties, Kindred’s board revised the firm’s ‘purpose statement’ throughout 2020,  to “transform gambling by being a trusted source of entertainment that contributes positively to society”.

“We rest on our purpose to transform gambling into a more trusted source of entertainment and positive contributor to society,” it added. “That includes offering our 30 million customers a superior experience while helping them feel safe and secure.”

Kindred’s revised approach sees the company place sustainability remits across all operating divisions of the company, encompassing tech, marketing, product management, compliance, HR and customer service.

Boardroom-level changes saw Kindred become the first online gambling company to incorporate a ‘Sustainability Council’ placing the firm’s social responsibility mandate alongside corporate governance, risk, compliance and auditing duties.

“It is my firm belief that sustainability needs to be an integrated part of our corporate strategy, governance process and business model,” explained Kindred Group CEO Henrik Tjärnström

“To ensure we move in this direction we have set up a Sustainability Council and a Governance, Risk and Compliance Council. These groups work to establish cross-functional integration across Kindred and ensure we continue to make progress on our sustainability commitments.”

Kindred has also enhanced its commitment to utilising tech resources to develop further market-leading safer gambling systems, following on from the success of its proprietary built PS-EDS player intervention and at-risk gambling detection system.

Backing its technology unit, Kindred will continue its multi-million investment in next stage technologies, incorporating ‘behavioural research and predictive artificial intelligence (AI)’ to minimise the player risks of its future products and current inventories.    

Heightened tech responsibilities have seen Kindred implement a new ‘supplier code of conduct’ guiding the firm on how to conduct business with external third parties.

“Getting to zero will not be an easy task, but we are confident we can get there through collaboration with researchers, investing in technology, and working with regulators to secure a robust regulated market,” Tjärnström remarked. 

Group marketing and sponsorship directives must display all Kindred brands as ‘positive contributors to society‘, which are fully compliant with local market regulations.

In addition, Kindred brand sponsorships which include Swedish Elite Football, Derby County, Club Brugge, Paris Saint Germain, and the European Football for Development will be focused on solely achieving ‘positive community outcomes’

Moving forward, the future directives of Kindred’s sustainability charter will be modelled on the UN’s wide-ranging ‘sustainable development goals‘ for governments and business organisations.  

UN goals call on governments and businesses to on the future challenges that wider society faces in relation to poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, and peace and justice.

“Kinded has highlighted sustainability as a core theme in our Group strategy and thereby ensuring it is embedded in every business decision,” the company remarked. 

“Sustainability cannot and should not be an isolated area of our operations, which is why we constantly work on integrating sustainability frameworks across the Company, as well as adopting a governance structure to facilitate that it happens.”


 

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