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Creating sustainable innovations to meet consumer needs
Today’s consumers demand products that take health and safety into account. These products need to be environmentally friendly and produced in a responsible manner. Groupe SEB's innovation strategy focuses on the end user and aims for products without any compromise in terms of performance, quality, service life and safety.
Sustainable development, clearly identified as a driver behind innovation, covers energy efficiency, acoustic performance, recyclability, new materials etc. Each new generation of products is enhanced by innovations that embody an ever-increasing respect for people and the environment and that take health and nutritional concerns into account. These products encourage "home cooking" and a balanced diet, whilst also saving time; recycled plastic is integrated into steam stations; the Silence AC hair dryer is quieter and offers user comfort; the Rowenta Eco Intelligence range and fans from Arno and Asia Fan use less energy; etc.
Encouraging product repairs over replacement
The Group also pays close attention to the relationship with its consumers. Two key objectives in the Group’s policy towards consumers are improving after-sales service and encouraging product repairs over replacement.
A product's service life can be extended through repair. A pioneer in this field, Groupe SEB encourages a reduction in the number of exchanged products by investing in their repairability. Groupe SEB considers products to be fully repairable if all replaceable parts are available and with no parts costing more than half the product price. In this regard, the Group relies on a network of 6,500 licensed repair technicians around the world, including 2,800 in China. In order to support the repair of products outside their guarantee period, the Group ensures that some 36,000 different spare parts remain available to repair centres for ten years and at the lowest possible price.
The ability to repair Groupe SEB products has been included as one of the Group’s major eco-design criteria. Concrete targets for each product family have been formalised in the eco-design internal guide. In 2015, 67% of products sold were fully repairable and 97% repairable in part.
For healthy, flavoursome cooking
With its expertise in food preparation, cooking and diet, Groupe SEB has made nutrition a key element in its product innovation policy. Through new solutions promoting healthy, balanced nutrition, the Group contributes on its level to combat obesity and cardiovascular disease, which are real public health issues in a growing number of countries.
Nutritious and Delicious: health and pleasure
Launched in 2006, the Nutritious and Delicious appliance range enables the preparation of light but tasty meals. The Actifry fryer, for example, produces crispy chips with a single spoonful of oil. And the Nutricook pressure cooker adjusts its steam cooking setting according to the type of foodstuff, in order to preserve the food's nutritional qualities.
In addition to this range, which symbolises healthy and tasty cooking, many other Group products embody the same values. It is recalled that Groupe SEB is a specialist in all forms of steam cooking...
Solutions that make "home made" easy
"Home made" cooking is currently undergoing a resurgence in popularity in response to different consumer expectations; in particular the desire to eat healthily and the pleasures of cooking and sharing meals. To support this movement towards better dietary balance, the Group offers a wide range of appliances aiming at time saving and simplicity: multi-graters, kneading machines, bread makers, juice extractors and even a yogurt maker which also produces cottage cheeses and milk-based desserts.
Safe products for the user
All Group products are designed to strictly respect user safety and health, with particularly tight requirements in terms of the substances which are used in their manufacture. In 2003, the Group established a list of harmful substances which it has prohibited in its products, thereby exceeding the regulatory requirements in numerous countries. In 2005 this list was completed with the integration of the European ROHS directive on the limitation of dangerous substances. This list of prohibited substances applies to Group sites and to all of its suppliers. Since late 2008, Groupe SEB has also integrated into its procedures the new European measures of REACH regarding substances of very high concern.
Products for all
Groupe SEB ensures that the greatest possible number of consumers has access to its products. It is particularly attentive to two types of consumer:
People with disabilities or specific physical difficulties
Making products more ergonomic and easier to use is another of the Group’s areas of research. This includes factoring in the needs of people with reduced agility such as senior citizens. The Group has, for example, collaborated in France with the Institut de la Vision and the École Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle on prototypes of products adapted for the vision-impaired. This project has increased the awareness among the innovation teams of visual impairment and suggested ways to improve existing products and those to come.
People with low incomes
Groupe SEB has built its brand policy to respond to the needs of different consumer categories in all countries. The Moulinex range (entry level) therefore offers quality products at affordable prices for people with low incomes.
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