John Cockerill, a committed Group, citizen of the world.
Award-winning sponsorship and expansion in France.
Caïus Heritage Sponsorship and Public Awards
With a view to sharing a slice of industrial history as widely as possible, in 2018, Promethéa, the Belgian benchmark corporate sponsorship organization, granted us the Caïus 2018 Heritage Sponsorship Award for our work as part of the John Cockerill bicentennial. Material produced went out in book form, as a TV documentary, a public exhibition, and the restoration of the Cockerill Chateau; without forgetting the setting up of the John Cockerill Foundation.
This is a story that has been resonating with the community, since the Group also won the Public Award.
Prize for best Belgian investor in France
Voted the best Belgian investor in France for his continuing investment over several years, Jean-Luc Maurange, Group CEO, received the Panel’s Special Award from the hands of Belgium’s Secretary of State for Foreign Trade, Pieter De Crem. In France, John Cockerill brings together 1895 people who work every day to preserve the spirit of John Cockerill.
John Cockerill Foundation
Serving national heritage, culture, and humanitarian and social action
Since 2017, the John Cockerill Foundation has governed the Group’s sponsorship policy in Belgium and abroad. Its purpose? To preserve, enhance and pass on the heritage, both physical and non-physical, of John Cockerill and its successors through support and development of a selection of projects, all closely connected with culture, industrial heritage, or fulfilling a humanitarian and social calling. This is a step further in meeting the needs of our time, totally in keeping with the Group’s core values, mission and strategy.
Flagship projects in 2018…
Archives and heritage, preserving and promoting the Group’s history
In 2018, the Foundation took several initiatives to conserve and showcase the Group’s historical archives. In particular, it has renovated the heritage areas of Château Cockerill in Seraing (Belgium), headquarter of the Group since 1817.
The Arc Majeur, where art meets technology
The Arc Majeur is the largest ever work in weathering steel. A work of art that the John Cockerill Group is proud to erect at the Welding Expertise Centre in Seraing, in Belgium. Conceived by artist Bernar Venet, it will traverse the Belgian motorway E411. A true feat of design, technology and manufacturing, this monumental artwork is set to delight motorists, coming autumn 2019 (www.arcmajeur.com).
“It requires a certain boldness to erect a 60-metre high arch! We have brought together a great deal of interest and an enormous amount of know-how in this work”, says Marie, Project Manager. “We are all proud to be part of this promotion of the Group’s know-how”.
The Nest Home, when human values are at the heart of activities
The Foundation intermittently surrounds itself with volunteers and is always ready to listen to employees wishing to lend a hand.
“We were in Nairobi, Kenya, in the process of acquiring a company, and we were moved by the Nest Home, an association looking to improve the living conditions of children whose parents have died or are in prison”, says Audrey, member of the strategic team. “The volunteers’ enthusiasm, their lack of resources and the children’s smiles really touched us. We turned to the Foundation and the Foundation came forward.”
With this in mind, the Foundation also financed the installation of a unit developed by one of the Group’s start-ups, to make the association self sufficient in energy and drinking water. Simultaneously, it organized a collection of clothing, school supplies and equipment, involving the Group’s staff.
Rokia, Communication Officer, who personally took part, says “The association does not benefit from public subsidies. We really felt all the personal warmth, as well as the heart of those involved, when we handed over the first boxes; thank you, colleagues!”
“The Foundation has now been in existence for two years, with beautiful projects already undertaken and others well on the way. We are really happy to see that the young – more and more aware of their responsibility to society – are very sensitive to this”, underlines Véronique, Spokesperson.
And also... an internal recognition
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) honored at the Innovation Awards
It was a real pet project shared by John Cockerill’s staff the world over; the health, nutrition and education program unfurled by one of the Group’s Indian subsidiaries won the Personnel Prize at the 2018 Awards.
Some villages close to the Hedavali workshop in India have been identified by local authorities as “particularly vulnerable tribal groups”. The CSR Committee then rolled up its sleeves to put together a robust action plan with the authorities, schools and health stakeholders. Renovation of schools, distribution of water filters and hygiene kits, dental and eye checks, support for pregnant and breastfeeding women. A multiplicity of initiatives aimed at improving daily life on the spot!
“The measures we have taken have benefited the lives of over 4000 people”, says Sithu, Communication Officer, “and the establishments where we have taken action have even been described as model schools by the authorities.”
Sunil takes a longer-term perspective: “Within the CSR Committee, we consider that healthy community is the best way to achieve sustainable development.”
Opening up to the world around us
No big fuss, but rather a desire to promote engagement with social issues internally throughout the Group. All these events add to the flagship initiatives described elsewhere. They are widely relayed by our employees via social media, both externally and internally.
In Belgium, we made the most of a day off by inviting our staff’s children to the Technifutur Training Centre. On the menu? Robots, digital machines and 3D printing. Enough to convey John Cockerill’s taste and dedication to technology for use by future generations of entrepreneurs!
Twenty colleagues each walked 100 km in support of OxfamTrail, a walk to contribute to the fight against poverty.
As part of Mobility Week, Head Office staff were invited to a breakfast … on a train! And this to test the new Liège-Seraing line and encourage them to use public transports. Our colleagues also had a chance to try out the latest generation of hybrid vehicles.
As part of the Company Open Day held on a Sunday, dedicated employees also took turns to articulate John Cockerill’s initiatives that are advancing the energy transition, to the public.
Ethics : ongoing awareness-raising
“As you know, one of our Group’s core values is responsibility. Where ethics are concerned, this is clearly the case, we seek to adhere to the Group’s golden rules in this area and to learn from issues that arise.”
This is how our CEO, Jean-Luc Maurange, introduced an online interactive quiz lined up in 2018, which will continue to unfold in 2019. In this quiz, Tim, an imaginary employee, is confronted with situations involving ethical problems. What would you do if you were Tim?