Lisa Longley comes to Sambro with over 10-years experience in the manufacturing industry to oversee the implementation of a new sustainability program and manage the ethical compliance of the toy company’s supply base. 

In a newly created role, Ethical and Sustainability Manager, Lisa will work closely with suppliers and vendors to ensure that Sambro’s ethical sourcing requirements are met, and that all factories meet the needs of Sambro, its customers and licensors. 

Lisa’s experience working with Far East suppliers in an ethical sourcing and factory auditing capacity means that she is well versed in the requirements and challenges this can involve. 

Her first job has been to create an ESG committee and draw up a policy with clear objectives which she will ensure are met. 

These include responsible sourcing and supply chain management, safeguarding the health, wellbeing and safety of Sambro employees, proactive management of consumption of resources and energy and sourcing goods and services which generate a positive impact with customers. 

Lisa will also take responsibility for overseeing the prevention of discrimination and the promotion of diversity and inclusion in the work place as well as the companies anti-corruption and anti-bribery measures.

Paul Blackaby, CEO, Sambro said: “Our ESG strategy is a pillar of our growth & value enhancement initiative and Lisa’s appointment as Ethical Sustainability Manager, will help drive forward our ESG ambitions and commitments across our business and wider supply chain.” 

Sambro works with over 10 brands who trust the toy developer with their intellectual property. These brands include Disney, Nickelodeon, Mattel, Hasbro, Viacom, Bull Dog and Cosatto. 

The range of products under these brands is far reaching and includes household names such as; Barbie, Paw Patrol, Peppa Pig, Disney Princess and Care Bears. The innovative products are within Soft Toys, Creative Play, Novelties and Outdoor fun. In 2022, Sambro will distribute over 8m units of character plush toys.

Lisa will undertake a review of Sambro’s ethical compliance requirements and comparing them to each licensor to ensure all factories are meeting the correct standards. All vendors will also need to declare their manufacturing sites to allow full visibility of the supply chain.

Sambro recently expanded its European 3PL warehouse model to support sales growth in the EU and so this will also fall into Lisa’s remit for sustainability and ethical compliance as part of the supply chain.

She has already started to look at factory on boarding process and ensure that they are up to the standard that Sambro and its licensors expect.  

This will also apply to the company’s own portfolio of brands including Puzzle Palz – fun, character erasers which have sold over 35m units worldwide since their launch in 2019, Love & Hugs and Let’s Create, which have a wide variety of toys within each brand.  

Sambro has unrivalled, long-term relationships with some of the world’s largest FMCG retailers, toy specialists, grocers and distributors. These include ASDA, The Entertainer, Pepco, Home Bargains, Smyths and Action. Lisa will also undertake audits of these retailers policies and systems. 

Lisa has a keen interest in sustainability on both a personal and professional level and is excited to be pushing Sambro forward in this field. 

Lisa said: “Managing the products we create, how they are packaged and the impact they have on the environment should be key considerations for all of us at Sambro. I will be working with my colleagues across the business to initiate new ways of working, new product developments and other ‘green’ changes to how our business is run.” 

Sambro which grew its turnover by 38% in 2021 to £52m is confident it will achieve similar growth targets in its silver anniversary year.  This is attributed to continued transformation – a focus on customer relationships, product development and partnerships, as well as growing the team and strengthening every area of the business. 

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