VERSACE SUSTAINABILITY FAQS
Fashion is a constantly evolving arena, though one thing remains the same: our responsibility to people and the planet. Sustainability is a core part of the brand’s path into the future and Versace is always looking at all aspects of the business to serve customers in an innovative, disruptive and responsible way. As Artistic Director Donatella Versace herself says: “There’s nothing more glamorous than looking towards the future.”
Versace is on a mission to redefine glamour, grounded in three pillars core to the Company’s strategy:
Empowering human kind. Empowerment has always been a core part of the Versace approach, both in how we operate internally and how we connect with customers externally. Versace aims to develop diversity, promote young talent, and build a culture of sustainability.
Promoting Italian excellence. Versace elevates Italian craftsmanship through co-creation with our trusted partners, applying Italian care and pride to our global approach.
Disrupting luxury positively. Versace takes a disruptive approach across aspects of how we work, like evolving more sustainable materials and designing more sustainable products and boutiques.
Versace looks to the future with responsibility towards people and the planet. Embracing a more conscious approach includes paying close attention to the provenance and conditions under which all products are produced and sourced.
Going fur-free has been a natural choice for Versace. This decision is part of a broader, sustainable innovation program the Company is pursuing, with a strong commitment to evaluate and improve impact across the entire supply chain. With an eye to Versace’s role in the fashion community overall, this ethical step aims to inspire innovation and raise awareness.
In line with the announcement in March 2018, Versace has stopped using fur and kangaroo leather in all its products.
Any fashion item - whether a t-shirt, a belt, or a shoe - has an impact on the environment along its entire lifecycle: from the choice of raw materials, to how they are treated and processed, to the energy and water used, and any waste that may result along the way.
In the process towards a sustainable future for the brand, Versace began by conducting a lifecycle analysis of key products in the collection to identify areas for improvement. This comprehensive approach has stimulated many innovative initiatives across the company.
One area is in the design process, when choices are made that will have an environmental impact of the final product. This starts with learning: understanding how fashion and luxury impact the world, what it means to be sustainable, and the responsibility we all have to make responsible choices. So far, hundreds of Versace people - including designers, merchandisers, production staff - have participated in trainings to make them environmental stewards in their daily choices.
In addition to making environmentally-conscious choices, Versace is collaborating to set standards for the industry. One example is working to phase out harmful chemicals from the production process, to ensure customer safety and worker health. Over several years, Versace has played an active role in the CNMI Sustainability Working Group, to adopt rules on chemical safety.
Every choice Versace makes doesn’t stop at the doors of the Atelier – decisions involve all suppliers and collaborators throughout the process of creating our collections. Adopting a sustainable approach contributes to the fairness, collaboration and trust-based relationships Versace has always shared with all partners.
One example of Versace’s unique and innovative approach: a Code of Conduct written by hundreds of participants. Common values emerged from the collaboration: respect, human touch, interdependence, concreteness, and transparency. These have now been codified in shared principles to ensure accountability throughout Versace’s entire supply chain.
Additionally, in order to maintain visibility and transparency, Versace is continuously in the process of carrying out social and environmental audits on suppliers based on the leading standards of the sector, including evaluation of human rights, fair wages, and working conditions.
For Versace, these are only the first steps in a long path together toward a future-fit business model in creating the best supply chain in luxury.
Versace boutiques are our window to the world and to our customers. Integrating sustainability principles in our retail spaces means enhancing both environmental aspects and the experience of everyone who walks into the boutique.
A recent Versace flagship opening in London Sloane Street is an iconic example of integrating sustainability principles in our boutiques. The Sloane Street boutique is the first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified store in the iconic street. An internationally recognized mark of excellence, LEED certification provides independent, third-party verification that a building was designed and built for high performance in key areas of human and environmental health.
With regards to the environment, sustainable innovation has been embedded in stores design, materials, equipment and operations. New boutiques use less energy for heating, air conditioning, and lighting than an average store. An equally important benefit is for people. Occupants of green buildings, both customers and employees, are healthier and more productive, as green buildings have better indoor air quality and lighting.
The LEED-certified opening is part of a retail plan for sustainable store openings and renovations and represents a key milestone of the Versace Sustainable Innovation program. The next sustainable boutique is due to open this Fall in Miami.
On a mission to redefine glamour, Versace is taking a sustainable approach in developing future collections.
This starts by analyzing the impact that products have on people and the environment: an assessment of the product lifecycle. Then, collections are re-imagined at each stage of the process: from design to production and shipping. Through a collaborative effort between Versace colleagues and partners and suppliers, more responsible alternatives are explored for materials selection, colors, printing and finishing processes, even packaging.
With an eye to constant improvement, our work is never finished. We are continuously looking to develop an intentional sustainable profile for more parts of the Versace collection, and to improve our impact each step of the way.
At Versace, sustainable innovation is a journey to enhance everything we do, and we have only begun.
Within the Company, this means taking a 360-degree approach to the business, evaluating and improving our impact in everything from collections to boutiques, from policies to people.
Sustainable leadership also extends outside Versace: to our partners, suppliers, customers and beyond, as we take seriously our responsibility to co-create innovative solutions and promote sustainability in fashion.
We look forward to sharing the next milestones on our journey to redefine glamour.