Case study LA10-12: Olympic strength

Shortly after Electrolux acquired the leading Egyptian major appliances manufacturer, Olympic Group, the process of integration into got under way. It started with workshops and collaborative gap analyses followed by audits and a Code of Conduct assessment.

Olympic was formally acquired by Electrolux in July 2011, following a due diligence process that included environmental issues and labor practices. With the purchase in place, the next priority was to find the best ways to integrate Olympic into the Electrolux Group.

The logical starting point was to understand any major similarities and differences between Olympic and Electrolux. This was done in three ways.

1.  Workshops and gap analyses

In November, Electrolux organized top management workshops to present and discuss Electrolux values and Group policies such as the Code of Ethics, Workplace Code of Conduct and the Environmental Policy. Workshops included a collaborative gap analysis to identify key areas for action. From December, workshops were cascaded down throughout the organization, accompanied by presentations and Group policies translated into Arabic. As of January 2012, 2,500 new Electrolux colleagues had attended the workshops.

2.  Code of Conduct audits

Code of Conduct audits are under way, with five completed and five planned for 2012. The audits reveal strengths, weaknesses and areas for improvement.

3.  Code of Conduct assessment

As a previous supplier to Electrolux, Olympic was familiar with the Group’s Code of Conduct, and the results of the assessment in 2011 show good alignment. Olympic scored over 70% on all but one parameter, including nondiscrimination, freedom of association and working hours. The major area of improvement concerned collaboration with suppliers and contractors.

The three assessments described above have all identified similar strengths and weaknesses. Olympic Group and Electrolux in Europe are developing a prioritized action plan. Complete integration is expected to take several years.

Electrolux has initiated the same three-step process for CTI, the Chilean appliance manufacturer in which the Group acquired a controlling share in October 2011.