Socio-Economic Compliance

Having operations in 65 countries also means complying with different national and supranational regulations as well as maintaining an active dialogue to foster an ongoing stakeholder and social engagement. For this reason, from a global perspective, Dufry’s position towards regulations necessarily needs to go beyond the compliance and statutory requirements of the norms and have a more holistic and broader approach. In this regard, Dufry has a number of initiatives and control mechanisms in place that permit the company to monitor and ensure compliance with national and international laws and follow respective ethical standards.

Supplier Social Assessment

Dufry is aware of its responsibility beyond its own direct activities and strives to ensure that suppliers of goods and services behave responsibly towards society and the environment. To ensure this, Dufry expects suppliers and business partners to comply with the law, stipulated contract conditions and international best practices in respect of human rights, the environment, health and safety and labor standards.

As a step forward towards achieving a more sustainable supply chain, in 2017 Dufry developed its Supplier’s Code of Conduct, with the purpose of ensuring that our suppliers across all product categories have in place accepted business standards, as described by the UN Global Compact, regarding:

  • Ethics and integrity
  • Labor and employment practices and working conditions
  • Environmental compliance and sustainability
  • Product safety and security

This code of conduct, together with the Dufry Code of Conduct – both of them available on the sustainability section of our corporate website and which was updated updated in 2019 to reflect developments in law, regulation and professional ethics, as well as our enhanced commitment to a more sustainable business – and the Corporate Governance and Remuneration reports included in the annual report, demonstrate how Dufry assumes its responsibility concerning social, ethical and environmental standards and how we put into practice the principles of sustainable development in our day-to-day work.

We expect all of our suppliers and business partners to comply with the principles included in Dufry Supplier’s Code of Conduct, and ultimately to replicate these standards further down their supply chain. In 2019 we continued our effort to proactively share the Code with additional suppliers from all product categories. The Supplier’s code of conduct has now been shared with suppliers accounting for approx. 42% of our sales. Out of the suppliers reached, we have received acknowledgement of our code from 84% of them. During 2020 we are committed to keep extending the reach and engage with more of our suppliers.

Customer Privacy and IT Security

Dufry is committed to safeguarding the privacy of its customers whose personal information Dufry may have access to. Dufry has implemented the necessary management and IT Security systems to treat any customer’s personal information as confidential, securely store such personal information to prevent unauthorized access to it and collect, use and otherwise process it for legitimate business purposes only, and in accordance with the Privacy statement listed on its website and applicable laws.

Dufry offers two website applications that collect some personal information from customers – the Reserve & Collect service and a loyalty program called RED by Dufry. These customer engagement channels have experienced an important increase in registered users - reaching over 5 million customers included in the company CRM system by the end of 2019. Some personal information, as well as the personal preferences of these customers is collected during the registration process, so that Dufry can provide a more personalized communication and in-store experience. In 2019, around 4 % of Dufry’s global sales collected some identifiable customer data and the company is working towards increasing that share.

Online transactions

While Dufry is undergoing a digital transformation of its business and embracing digital technology across multiple customer touchpoints, the company still does not handle online transactions that include payment of goods at its airport locations – exceptions are made for some locations, where respective customs regulations allow for this kind of service. The above mentioned Reserve & Collect service only allows customers to reserve products and collect them at their preferred airport location at the time the customer flies. Normally however, it is not until customers collect the products and show their boarding passes as required, that the payment is processed. This is due to customs regulations that only permit Dufry to sell products at the airport.

Data protection

Our Group Data Protection Policy lays out strict requirements for the processing personal data of customers, business partners, employees and other third parties whose personal information Dufry may have access to. It meets the requirements of the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and globally ensures compliance with the principles of national and international data protection laws in force all over the world, including, amongst others, the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX). The policy sets a globally applicable data protection and security standard for our company and regulates the sharing of information between our Group companies.

Our employees, as well as third-parties who provide services on Dufry’s behalf, are required by policy andprocess, as well as by contract, if applicable, to treat customer information with care. Our processes are designed to preclude unnecessary access to confidential information and Dufry has administrative, technical and physical safeguards that reflect this obligation. Dufry regularly reviews and enhances procedures and policies.

Moreover, the Group also undertakes internal Data Protection Audits and intrusion tests, while quarterly meetings are held to discuss and improve the protection of customers’ personal data. Anyone wishing to report a grievance or ask a question regarding Dufry’s data privacy policy, or to access, delete, correct, or transfer his or her personal information can address such subject data requests to

In 2019, Dufry did not report any incident regarding a breach of customer privacy.

IT Security

Dufry is continuously monitoring, reviewing and upgrading its processes to protect its business from potential cybersecurity threats. At a global level, Dufry has a Global IT Security Team, led by the Global IT Security Head that is responsible for keeping IT threats away from Dufry’s business, understanding emerging threats and investing in the necessary technology to mitigate potential new risks.

In this regard, Dufry has a number of systems and security processes in place, including a robust IT security system, and a number of internal policies and procedures in compliance with applicable laws and regulations and which are included in the Global Information Security Policies.

Dufry performs regular test of its systems and takes several measures to improve IT security, prevent malware infections and avoid data breaches. Amongst others, Dufry:

  • Encrypts customer, payment and any sensitive data and limits access to it
  • Keeps software up-to-date by installing updates and security patches implemented as a result of newly discovered vulnerabilities
  • Secures Point of Sale (POS) devices and applications
  • Performs regular vulnerability testing to identify weaknesses
  • Monitors all activity in Dufry’s systems and data for any anomalous activity and indications of threats
  • Uses (and promotes amongst its employees) secure passwords and two-factor authentication
  • Runs antivirus software continuously, periodically scanning systems for malicious files

An organization with over 31,000 employees worldwide

In the past six years, our workforce has increased by 91 % from 16,423 employees at the beginning of 2014 to 31,336 people (FTE) by the end of 2019. The two acquisitions of Nuance in 2014 and World Duty Free in 2015 and their timely integrations have not only changed our footprint in the market and have made Dufry the undisputed market leader in travel retail, they have also meant a lot of transformation and integration in terms of our human resources projects.

Overall, our total workforce remained stable during 2019 with 31,336 people (FTE) working for the group at December 31, 2019 compared to 30,264 at year-end 2018.

Across the 65 countries where the company is present, Dufry generates an additional contribution to the wealth of local comunities and the society by offering working opportunities to third party employees and consequently generation of additional salaries and tax payments. Our over 2,400 stores are not just shopping windows for our brand partners to showcase their novelties, but also labor opportunities for the over 3,670 people that work in our stores representing these brands and other service providers. From beauty advisors to IT developers, they all contribute to create a WorldClass shopping experience and benefit from accessing a dynamic market and work opportunities.

Equal employment

Dufry fosters a culture of equal opportunity. Our HR policy is to provide equal employment conditions andto offer career opportunities without discrimination to all our employees. We offer and promote working environments where everyone receives equal treatment, regardless of gender, color, ethnic or national origins, disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation or religion. In addition, we adhere to local legislation and regulations in all the countries where we operate. Any kind of child labor or forced labor is strictly forbidden and clear recruitment procedures and regular workplace controls ensure that this never happens at any location.

Anti-discrimination, diversity and ensuring equal opportunities are and have always been important social and corporate issues for Dufry across all locations, especially (but not exclusively) in developing countries. Many locations in which the Group operates still pose challenges to guarantee equality. We monitor those countries closely to ensure we provide equal opportunities to all our staff. As explained in our compliance section, the company has in place whistleblower mechanisms to denounce discrimination cases if they happen.

We provide our employees with fair and competitive wages based on an individual’s background and experience, their particular job within our organization, the appropriate market benchmark in the respective countries and locations, as well as her/his performance.

We assess the remuneration structure of our employees on a regular basis to make sure there is no discrimination related to any kind of diversity. In this context, we also proactively engage in an internal forum – Women@Dufry – where we address today’s challenges for women in their work place, in order to ensure that our female employees can fully develop their potential and career opportunities within the company. The forum is represented by selected female executives of the company and HR management and is sponsored by the CEO.

Equal salary certification in Switzerland

Dufry became equal salary certified in Switzerland at the beginning of 2019. This certification shows the commitment to a fair and unbiased reward structure, which enables employees to develop and thrive in their careers. The certification process took place in three stages through statistical evaluation, on-site audits and interviews with individuals and panel groups. All phases of the certification process were performed at Basel HQ and the Zurich airport operation and as result, Dufry has been able to demonstrate how management systems, HR policies and processes integrate the dimensions of equal remuneration.

Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining

Dufry respects legally recognized unions and internal forums created to represent their employees’ interests. The Company’s policy on collective agreements is tailored to each location in which it operates, as each location is subject to its own specific laws and regulations. As an example, the current practice in some of the main Group operations is described below:

  • In Brazil, there is a collective agreement in place which covers core employee related topics such as salary reviews, general allowances (meal, transport, benefits, etc.), work contract restrictions/special conditions, work shifts, vacations, health and safety, contributions, gratifications, awards and requirements aiming employee’s guarantees.
  • Greece also has a collective agreement in place ruling the main employee topics.
  • In Spain, Dufry has a collective agreement in place that covers all employees in that country except senior management. The agreement is negotiated between the Company and a committee made up of employee representatives and labor union members and outlines conditions such as salary, holiday days and health and safety in the workplace, among other human resources related matters.
  • In the UK, Dufry has an employee forum – “Voice” – made up of staff representatives. This forum was created as a partnership between the company’s management and employees to influence and communicate business change.
  • In the US, there are a number of recognized trade unions that Dufry engages with, including Unite Here, Workers United, United Food and Commercial Workers, Teamsters, Newspaper Guild and Culinary Workers.

Employee health & safety and airport security practices

Dufry is strongly committed to providing all staff with a working environment that protects their health, safety and wellbeing.

Workplace safety is a priority and an essential commitment for the company, both in its offices and in stores. The company ensures that all activities are carried out safely and taking all possible measures to eliminate (or at least reduce) the risks to health, safety and welfare of employees, contractors, customers, visitors and any other person who can be impacted by our operations.

The majority of our workforce operates in airport, port, cruise-ship and similar environments, where as a basic prerequisite employees have to comply and follow the respective airport’s, seaport’s or vessel’s safety rules, as these environments are highly regulated. On top of this, Dufry has specific health & safety regulations for its employees, including internal policies and guidelines – both global and local – which may go beyond the legal health and safety requirements.

Dufry strives to achieve high occupational health & safety standards and actively encourages compliance across the whole Group. As a result, Dufry has a number of different Health & Safety Policies throughout the organization. Regardless of the specific requirements of each local legislation, there are certain principles that all these policies adhere to, including:

  • Adherence to country, state and local health & safety legislation and any other requirements
  • Workplaces as safe and hazard-free spaces
  • That employees have the necessary skills and training to perform their duties
  • That employees have been informed of the contents of the policy
  • That all the elements and protective equipment required for employees to carry out their job safely have been provided
  • That the Group has procedures in place in case of emergency

Management of occupational health and safety management processes change from one location to another, with a number of common guidelines that apply to all our operations, including the following:

  • All Dufry operations provide information to employees on topical issues and health and safety initiatives, including workers that are not members of our staff but work on our premises
  • Health and safety activities are regularly reviewed to ensure issues are effectively managed and improvements are made where necessary. In some of our locations, reviews include employee representation consultations (where appropriate).
  • Responsibility for the governance and review of health and safety sits with local operations and HR teams
  • At airport and seaport environments, we ensure close collaboration with landlord teams to ensure compliance with their own H&S regulation and management process

Promoting a healthy working environment

Ensuring a safe workplace is a duty of all members of our staff. Whilst the joint work of local Health & Safety Committees and HR teams is crucial in identifying potential risks and hazards, workers are encouraged to report to these teams any work related hazards or hazardous situations to management. The same process is used for workers to remove themselves from work situations that they believe could cause injury or ill health. Work-related incidents are investigated and reported to management to ensure remediation plans (where needed) are designed in cooperation with the Health & Safety committees, and implemented, ensuring that processes are duly updated.

Additionally, Health and Safety committees undertake regular worksite analysis to identify risks and hazards. This analysis is aimed to identify existing hazards as well as conditions and operations in which changes might occur to create hazards. Results of these assessments are shared with the local HR teams and management.

The highest incidence of occupational accidents is, of course, among store and warehouse staff. The greatest risks to which Dufry workers are affected include:

  • Risks related to material elements, objects, products and constituent elements of machines or vehicles
  • Falls at the same level
  • Incidents with transport and transfer devices

Training on Health and Safety is critical to promote a safe work environment. We therefore conduct induction sessions with new members of our staff and hold regular training sessions with all of our staff, both in stores and offices, ensuring understanding of the policies and procedures. If needed, this training is extended to workers who are not members of our staff but do work on our premises.

Economic Dimension

  • Create a sustainable and profitable company.
  • Foster customer satisfaction and shopping experience to trigger their recognition.
  • Support local economies by buying local goods and services, paying local taxes and employing local staff.

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Environmental Dimension

Environmental Dimension
  • Minimize our environmental impact by operating an integrated and efficient logistics chain to transport products.
  • Reduce our waste and energy consumption.
  • Support our landlords in their initiatives to protect the environment.

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Social Dimension

  • Maintain quality work environments for our employees.
  • Responsible procurement practices.
  • Support the communities in which we live and work.

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Environmental Dimension

Economic Dimension


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