Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ten Thousand Villages named one of most ethical companies

Posted By on Wed, Mar 31, 2010 at 11:16 AM

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If you didn't know, we've got our very own fair trade retailer, Ten Thousand Villages, here in Charlotte, in the Cotswold Village Shops. Congratulations!

Charlotte, N. C. – Ten Thousand Villages, a fair trade organization with headquarters in Akron, Pa., has, once again, been recognized by the Ethisphere Institute as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies for 2010. This recognition marks the third year in a row that Ten Thousand Villages was named to the list as an ethical leader in the specialty retail category.

“We are, once more, honored to be recognized among this selection of major companies,” said Ty Smithdeal, store manager of Ten Thousand in Cotswold Village Shops. “As a nonprofit retail store, even in difficult economic circumstances, we continue to strive to be fair trade leaders, coupling our mission with sustainable economic and environmental practices. Our continued recognition validates our continuing commitment to fair trade and to serving the needs of both the artisans who supply our products, and the customers who purchase them. Ten Thousand Villages operates as a business with a compassionate mission by maintaining integrity in our actions and relationships.”

This is the fourth year Ethisphere, a think-tank dedicated to the creation, advancement and sharing of best practices in business ethics, corporate social responsibility, anti-corruption and sustainability, has published the WME rankings, which appear in Ethisphere Magazine’s Q1 issue.

Through in-depth research and a multi-step analysis, Ethisphere reviewed thousands of nominations from companies in over 100 countries and 36 industries in order to determine the winners. Other retailers recognized in the specialty retail category include IKEA, Gap, Best Buy and Target.

“Ten Thousand Villages’ promotion of a sound ethical environment shines within its industry, and shows a clear understanding that operating under the highest standards for business behavior goes beyond goodwill and “lip-service” and is intimately linked to performance,” said Alex Brigham, Executive Director of the Ethisphere Institute. “This year’s World’s Most Ethical Companies award was more competitive than ever, because companies realize that making ethics a priority is critical in a tough economic environment.”

The methodology for the WME ranking includes reviewing codes of ethics, litigation and regulatory infraction histories; evaluating the investment in innovation and sustainable business practices; looking at activities designed to improve corporate citizenship; and studying nominations from senior executives, industry peers, suppliers and customers.

About Ten Thousand Villages

A fair trade retailer, Ten Thousand Villages offers home and garden decor, jewelry, personal accessories and gift items rich in ancient global traditions. Ten Thousand Villages features products from more than 130 artisan groups in 38 countries via a network of more than 150 retail outlets throughout the United States.

For more than 60 years, Ten Thousand Villages has established fair, long-term buying relationships in places where skilled artisans lack opportunities for stable income. Ten Thousand Villages is a nonprofit program of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC).

For more information about Ten Thousand Villages, please contact Ty Smithdeal, store manager, at 704-365-0010 or visit tenthousandvillages.com. Ten Thousand Villages is open Monday – Friday 10AM – 7PM, Saturday 10AM – 6PM.

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