Ricoh South Africa has completed a major solar power installation at its new regional head office in Equites Park in Meadowview Business Estate.
The announcement coincides with Ricoh’s global commitment to environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) goals that will see it cut carbon emissions by 63% by 2030 and become carbon neutral by 2050. Ricoh was recently selected as a member of the S&P Global Sustainability Yearbook 2023, with a score within the top 5% in its industry.
“One of the key reasons we chose these premises is because of Equites’ focus on green energy and sustainability, epitomised by the installation of this solar infrastructure, which dovetails with our global and local commitments to creating a more environmentally conscious and responsible business,” says Jacques van Wyk, CEO of Ricoh South Africa.
“This is not just a gimmick for us,” says Van Wyk. “The impact of load shedding on our customer experience had a significant impact on the decision, but more importantly, we are leading by example by building long-term sustainable workplaces and investing significant resources to ensure that we meet the commitments we made to our customers, partners and society at large.
“Jake Yamashita, Ricoh’s global president and CEO, is on record saying that ‘if not sufficiently motivated by the human need to protect the planet, companies should understand that a failure to modernise will result in them being left behind’. This is just one small part of that commitment, and in the context of the power crisis in South Africa, it also makes a lot of sense from a business perspective.”
One of the key benefits of the new solar system, which comprises 178 panels producing up to 640kWh of daily power generation, is greatly reducing reliance on the grid, but also reducing costs from an operational perspective. The new premises currently hosts Ricoh SA staff and a Ricoh Europe supply-chain satellite office, so there are knock-on benefits for the company’s regional operations, too.
“The intention is primarily to reduce all of our grid consumption,” says Van Wyk. “The system doesn’t feed back into the grid; that will follow with phase two once the relevant regulatory approvals are in place.”
With an estimated 70% sun-dependent solar saving, the new system allows Ricoh to take a significant step towards reducing its carbon emissions to meet global targets.
Ricoh is empowering digital workplaces using innovative technologies and services that enable individuals to work smarter from anywhere. With cultivated knowledge and organisational capabilities nurtured over its 85-year history, Ricoh is a leading provider of digital services, information management, and print and imaging solutions designed to support digital transformation and optimise business performance.
Headquartered in Tokyo, Ricoh Group has major operations throughout the world and its products and services now reach customers in approximately 200 countries and regions. In the financial year ended March 2022, Ricoh Group had worldwide sales of about US$14.5-billion.
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 Each year, S&P Global assesses major companies’ sustainability in the three areas of economic, environment and society. Companies with outstanding sustainability efforts in each industry group are selected and awarded as members of the Sustainability Yearbook. S&P Global evaluated approximately 7 800 companies in 61 industries worldwide this year, with 708 companies included in the yearbook.