Zeroing in on carbon reduction


    December 23, 2019


    Mahesh Iyer, our Market Group Leader in growth markets, shares his thoughts on our sustainability highlights from the past year


    We made a promise, and we are well on track ­to deliver it.


    As 2020 draws closer, we are taking a close look at how Signify is doing against our bold commitment toward full carbon-neutral operations by the end of 2020. This week, I’m proud to showcase a great milestone in sustainability from Growth markets, the area I head up at Signify.


    Globally, it’s been a year of sustainability highlights. We’ve been named Industry Leader in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for the third year running. We’ve unveiled innovative products with a sustainability stamp on them, like our 3D printed luminaires designed for a circular economy.

    And now, we’ve announced that five more of our growth markets are carbon neutral: ASEAN, Far East, India, Indonesia and Pacific. That’s on top of Turkey and the Middle East, which were already carbon neutral.

    Globally, this means that 15 out of our 19 markets now have carbon neutral operations, and we are well on our way to achieving the commitment we made at COP21 three years ago.

    Three ways to sustainability

    As a leader in sustainability, Signify has a responsibility to be transparent, to share our successes and what we’ve learned along the way. So, here are just some of the things the Growth Markets have done toward carbon-neutral operations, and more importantly, the shared goal with our customers and how we are seen to lead in sustainability within the industry.


    Across Growth Markets, we’ve been stepping up on space optimization, energy efficiency and use of renewables. As a result, these five growth markets have reduced their carbon emissions by 41% in 2019.

    Five growth markets have reduced their carbon emissions by 41% in 2019"

    Space optimization

    We use our own intelligent systems to regulate office lighting, including by using daylight sensors. This results in more efficient space use and energy savings. Through smart and flexible use of our spaces, we can operate with a much smaller footprint. Our India and Singapore offices are certified as Great Places to Work, attesting to how optimized workspaces can be pleasant, productive and foster interaction.

    Energy efficiency

    We’ve continuously optimized our air freight, reviewing distribution frequency and routes with our trade partners and using more sea freight to get things from A to B with lower fuel consumption. Our teams also cut back on air travels, using collaboration technologies to work virtually as much as possible.

    I’m also heartened to see a growing consciousness among our employees. Where safety permits, many have turned to carpooling and public transport – or both – for their commutes.

    Use of renewables

    We’ve committed to switching all our electricity from fossil fuel-based electricity to renewables by the end of 2020. And as a member of the Climate Group’s EV100, we’ll have switched our fleet to hybrid and electric vehicles by 2030.

    India wind farm

    Enabling sustainability

    In 2019, the five growth markets have had great customer traction with sustainable projects for LED lighting as well as with Interact, our flagship connected lighting system. We’ve deployed projects in public infrastructure and airports across ASEAN: bridges and monuments in Vietnam; stadiums in Australia, Far East and Indonesia; and hotels and office buildings across all growth markets.
    As Signify makes a sustainable difference, we’ve gained industry recognition for our practices. In Singapore, we’re the first and only lighting firm certified in the most stringent category of Energy Performance Contracting for building retrofits by the Singapore Green Building Council. At the 2019 Sustainability Business Awards organized by Global Initiatives, our Philippines team was recognized as the overall winner in the country for multiple categories.
    Manesh body image

    Getting to the finish line

    We operate on the principle of “reduce what we can and offset what we can’t”. Becoming a carbon neutral company by the end of 2020 means investing in different carbon emission reduction projects. We do so in partnering with South Pole, a global market leader in sustainability solutions. Through our carbon offsetting program, we’ve handpicked projects that support communities in emerging economies to transition to a low-carbon economy while increasing our social impact.

    For example, we’re contributing to small to medium-size wind farms in India, which not only provide emissions-free power to the grid, but also support local health, education and employment programs.

    Making positive change means prioritizing the actions with the greatest impact, and so that’s what we’ve done and will continue to do"

    And in Vietnam, we’re supporting a hydropower plant that operates without a dam, avoiding the problems that can be associated with dam construction, like flooding, resettling and environmental impact on river flora. It’s also a source of stable electricity for the community, supporting local economic development and wellbeing.

    Making positive change means prioritizing the actions with the greatest impact, and so that’s what we’ve done and will continue to do.

    I’m proud to work for Signify because we’re committed to doing the right thing for the health of the planet, and I know we can inspire other companies to do the same. Through making the right choices, we can come together to achieve the great global aim of being a carbon neutral planet by 2050.

    About the author:

    Manesh Iyer

    Mahesh Iyer


    Market Group Leader in Growth Markets

    For further information, please contact:

    Signify Global Integrated Communications
    Neil Pattie
    Tel: + 31 6 15 08 48 17

    About Signify


    Signify (Euronext: LIGHT) is the world leader in lighting for professionals, consumers and the Internet of Things. Our Philips products, Interact systems and data-enabled services, deliver business value and transform life in homes, buildings and public spaces. In 2023, we had sales of EUR 6.7 billion, approximately 32,000 employees and a presence in over 70 countries. We unlock the extraordinary potential of light for brighter lives and a better world. We have been in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index since our IPO for seven consecutive years and have achieved the EcoVadis Platinum rating for four consecutive years, placing Signify in the top one percent of companies assessed. News from Signify can be found in the Newsroom, on X, LinkedIn and Instagram. Information for investors is located on the Investor Relations page.

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