"Ecology is an important pillar for us", says Erik Aerts, who is responsible for coordinating the project at Decathlon. "We are also very aware of the ecological footprint of our products, our own energy consumption and, of course, the ways in which we travel – the latter of which has a huge impact on our company's CO2 emissions."
This resulted in the company's adoption of a new car policy that encourages electric cars through the use of incentives. For example, employees choosing an electric car receive a more generous budget. "For us, it's a simple calculation", says Erik. "Electric cars are more beneficial than cars with a conventional internal combustion engine from a tax perspective. What's more, electricity is cheaper than petrol or diesel."
In addition, plug-in vehicles are great for the environment. Given that the vehicle charging stations on Decathlon's premises rely on a mixture of green electricity and electricity generated from the company's own solar panels, it's clear that the sports retail chain thinks about more than just the tax breaks when it comes to electric vehicles. Employees can also have a charging station included in their lease contract to charge their vehicles at home. "That's a personal choice, of course, as if they have a charging station nearby, they won't always go for this option. But the most important thing is that we give our employees the choice and eliminate barriers as far as possible", states Erik.