With the conflict-free announcement, the entire SMART product suite and supply chain has been officially declared free of conflict minerals following a supply chain investigation that led to an audit conducted by an independent third party.
Conflict minerals include tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold, which are typically present in most electronic devices. Rebel warlords from central Africa use these minerals to fund conflict and human rights abuses.
Since the US Dodd-Frank Act was passed, US companies are required to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), who investigate their supply chains for these conflict minerals. At present, very few companies have been able to rule conflict minerals out of their supply chains.
To be declared conflict-free, SMART had to go through a “Reasonable Country of Origin Inquiry” for all smelters of conflict minerals acquired or used throughout its supply chain. Those smelters that were identified as sourcing from conflict regions were then subjected to “due diligence”.
Warren Barkley, the chief technology officer of SMART Technologies, said of the announcement: “SMART is committed to not only enabling student success in the classroom, but also to contributing to a sustainable future for them by doing all that we can to produce environmentally friendly solutions.
“We are pleased that our customers now have independent confirmation that SMART is a reliable supplier of ethically-sourced, energy-efficient products.
"We anticipate to be one of only a handful of companies to include a company-wide conflict-free declaration in their conflict minerals filings with the SEC this year, and we're proud that SMART is the undisputed leader on this issue in our space."