Our Commitments and Progress
A world of opportunity
Sonoco is committed to creating long-term value for its stakeholders by becoming a more sustainable and responsible corporate citizen.
Business Strength and Shareholder Performance
- We returned $253 million to shareholders in the form of dividends and share repurchases in 2016, and $892 million in the past five years. We have provided quarterly dividends since 1925 and have increased dividends for 34 consecutive years, while providing shareholders a current 3% yield on investment.
- Gross profit increased to a record $937.4 million in 2016, up approximately 1%. Gross profit as a percentage of sales was 19.6%, up 90 basis points from 2015.
- We provided shareholders with a total return (including reinvested dividends) of 32.9% in 2016, compared with a 12% return by the S&P 500 and a 19% return by the Dow Jones Total Container and Packaging Index. Over the past five years, Sonoco has produced an 88.6% total return to shareholders.
Contributing to Our Communities
- In 2016 Sonoco provided $2,939,670 in cash donations to 49 nonprofit agencies and programs to support education, health and welfare, environmental, cultural and civic causes. 71% of these funds supported education.
- We provided $205,000 in college scholarships to family members of our employees and our community.
- We provided $75,000 in relief to assist Hurricane Matthew victims through the American Red Cross and OneSC.
- Since 2014, more than 100 Sonoco employees have participated in dozens of work days while having fun and networking with other members of the Sonoco family.
- Our volunteers raised $8,000 for Habitat for Humanity through the proceeds of our third annual 5K run.
Reducing Our Impact on the Environment
- We reduced normalized greenhouse gas emissions (CO2e) by almost 4% in 2016 and by 21% since 2009.
- We reduced normalized water usage by 4.7% in 2016 and by 42% since 2009.
- 10% of Sonoco’s global manufacturing operations have achieved 95%+ diversion of wastes to landfill.
Using 2014 as our new baseline, our commitment through 2020 is to:
- Reduce normalized global energy usage by 1% annually, which we believe will result in a further 1% reduction in GHG emissions (or reducing GHG emissions by 5% through 2020).
- Reduce normalized water usage by 5% through 2020.
- Achieve Sonoco Sustainability Star award status at an additional 10% of the Company’s operations by significantly diverting landfill wastes. Also, continue working with our customers to demonstrate total landfill diversion from their operations in North America and Europe.
- Demonstrate further improvement in employee safety, diversity and engagement.