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19 Jun 2018

Women's rights NGO raises concerns about supply chain transparency of German fashion retailer Zalando; co. responds

On 23 May 2018, Dr. Gisela Burckhardt, representative of FEMNET e.V., an NGO focused on the economic, cultural and social rights of women in the garment industry in Asia, gave a speech at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of German online fashion retailer Zalando, pointing to a lack of transparency across Zalando's supply chain. She also criticized the company for not making the results of its auditing process available to the public. Among other concerns that Dr. Burckhardt raised were the lack of childcare in Indian supplier factories and the proportion of women on Zalando's Executive and Supervisory Board, as well as in similar executive positions. We invited Zalando to respond to Dr. Burckhardt's speech. Zalando responded, replying individually to each of the concerns raised. Their response is available below (in the PDF document, the English translation provided by Zalando starts on page 10; Zalando's comments in English are highlighted). Frau Burckhardt responded to Zalando with a rejoinder to which Zalando also replied. Their response also includes relevant screenshots of their website and is available below (the English version provided by Zalando starts on page 4).