In order to situate our sustainability action plan in line with the expectations of our stakeholders and of society as a whole, in 2017 we reviewed our materiality. That is, the key issues that Rakuten has a responsibility to address in order to realize long-term business growth that contributes to the realization of a sustainable society.
Using international benchmarks, such as the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we established a list of 33 potential Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) concerns related to the business activities and culture of the Rakuten Group.
For each concern, employees, business partners, such as Rakuten merchants, and users of our services evaluated Rakuten’s degree of responsibility for addressing each concern (i.e., the importance to stakeholders). At the same time, our upper management evaluated the relevance and importance of these concerns to Rakuten.
The survey results identified 16 issues of high priority to both our stakeholders and upper management.
Safety and quality
- Data security and customer privacy
- Service accessibility and affordability
- Service safety and quality
- Anti-competitive practice prevention?
- Responsible information usage
- Sustainable consumption behaviors
- Responsible supply chain
Talent attraction and development
- Diversity and equality
- Skill development and benefits
- Workplace safety
- Climate change
- Biological diversity
- Entrepreneurship and innovation
- Disaster relief
- Future generations
Four most important concerns
In addition to ensuring high ethical and quality standards in all our business practices, attracting and developing a talented workforce is a key aspect of our long-term success.
Protection of the natural environment is another concern that the Rakuten Group should reflect in all its actions and reporting. In addition, our social contribution activities, especially support for future generations and for disaster-hit areas, are important aspects of local community empowerment initiatives.