World's worst brands
Yesterday we brought you the world’s coolest companies, today we have a roll call of the most controversial. And Asia is doing pretty badly, with six entries in the leading 10. Unsurprisingly, Korea’s Chonghaejin Marine tops the list following the Sewol ferry disaster, with the crew accused of deserting ship and failing to give passengers evacuation instructions. The CEO of Chonghaejin Marine was subsequently sentenced to 10 years in prison for involuntary homicide and embezzlement.
Japanese vehicle parts maker Takata ranks the second-most-controversial company due to the production of defective safety airbags, leading to recalls of millions of vehicles on the part of numerous car manufacturers due to safety risks. Investigations revealed that Takata had allegedly known about the defects but had decided on a non-disclosure policy.
Asia claims third spot, too, in the shape of Taiwanese food oil producer Chang Guann which was supplying contaminated products to food manufacturers. The company was fined for that transgression and for poor employment conditions. China’s Zhongrong Metal Productions places fourth due to health and safety, and employment conditions, while Dongguan Shinyang Electronics is in seventh for its poor employment conditions, human rights abuses and fraud. Korea’s KT ENS is in ninth, largely due to fraud.
Outside Asia, a few words on Uber (fifth), such as human rights abuses, anti-competitive practices and legislative violations. And everyone’s favourite controversy, FIFA (corruption, bribery, extortion and money laundering, human rights abuses, forced labour, occupational health and safety issues, plus poor employment conditions). Ah, the beautiful game.
“We hope that insight into the challenges these companies faced in 2014 will raise awareness of potential environmental, social and governance risks faced by globally-active businesses, and encourage corporations to systematically take into account such issues in their risk management strategies and processes,” says RepRisk, which compiled the list of corporate shame.