Supplier Diversity

Supplier Diversity

Company COmmitment

International Paper has been committed to supplier diversity for more than 30 years. Having a diverse supplier base enables International Paper to contribute to the economic well-being of the cities and towns where we live and work as well as increase access to suppliers that provide products and services to International Paper.


These business partners reflect our customers, employees and communities, and bring value to our company by delivering creative, cost-effective solutions to our businesses. Equally as important, we are able to fuel local business development, contribute to economic growth and create jobs that ultimately enhance the communities in which we work. The efforts of our business partners help us deliver world-class products and services to meet our customers’ diverse needs, thereby improving our position in the marketplace as an innovative leader.

Since 2008, International Paper has spent over $1.9 billion with diversity-owned businesses. In 2013, our spend exceeded $400 million, a 16 percent increase over 2012. Our goal is to help diverse businesses improve their operations, while enhancing their ability to develop and grow with us.

In 2013, the Supplier Diversity team collaborated with our procurement professionals to develop and deploy initiatives designed to expand the use of diverse suppliers in our supply chain. In 2014, we look forward to continuing our commitment to inclusion of diverse businesses in our supply chain.

Supplier Diversity Strategies and Programs

In 2013, the Supplier Diversity team was responsible for developing and implementing the strategies and programs that helped International Paper achieve its targets. These strategies and programs included: tracking and reporting supplier diversity spend results; ensuring supplier diversity regulatory compliance; encouraging business development; mentoring diverse suppliers; responding to prospective supplier inquiries; assisting sales with requests for information and requests for proposals; internal and external stakeholder management; supplier diversity communications and training; and supporting supplier diversity outreach events.

Outreach Programs: Meetings, Conferences, Trade Shows and Memberships

In 2013, International Paper maintained its corporate membership with U.S. diversity advocacy organizations such as the Mid-South Minority Business Council (MMBC), the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC).

2014 Strategic Goals

  • Increase spend with diversity-owned suppliers by 15 percent;
  • Increase supplier diversity education and training across International Paper;
  • Continue coaching and mentoring diverse suppliers;
  • Focus on supplier development opportunities; and
  • Launch formal Tier 2 program*.

Engagement with Diverse Supplier ServiceMaster Facilities Maintenance Grows

Since 2006, ServiceMaster Facilities Maintenance Inc., a diversity owned supplier based in Memphis, Tenn., has provided facility services for International Paper. A key advantage with ServiceMaster Facilities Maintenance is the company’s attention to detail, flexibility and a value-driven approach. Our business with them has grown from primarily janitorial services to include landscaping and pest control. Additionally, the company has expanded to multiple International Paper facilities across the United States, all the while maintaining a competitive price and quality service.

ServiceMaster Facilities Maintenance has developed a deep understanding of International Paper’s objective to control cost while improving service and maintaining quality. In 2013, ServiceMaster introduced an innovative concept of day cleaning, aimed at delivering more value to International Paper. A pilot is planned for the first quarter of 2014. ServiceMaster Facilities Maintenance has demonstrated capability and strength as a long-term provider to International Paper.

A “Tier 2” or “Second Tier” supplier is one that provides the products/services and invoices to the first tier supplier for goods and services rendered for eventual delivery to International Paper.


responsible sourcing

Expanding Renewable Energy Beyond Biomass

In Exeter, California, the industrial packaging business installed a ground-mounted solar system with single-axis tracking technology that will produce 1 MW of electricity, providing a significant amount of the plant’s electricity needs. The system, which uses over 3,700 solar panels, is estimated to offset 1,765 tons of GHG emissions annually and is financially and environmentally sustainable. Although this project makes up a tiny fraction of International Paper’s overall energy footprint, the installation is an added feature of our energy profile.


responsible sourcing

Capital & Manufacturing Services

In 2013, International Paper’s Manufacturing Services team reached an agreement with three key suppliers for the ongoing maintenance, repair or reuse of electronic sensors and circuit boards in our mills. The combination of these agreements and previously established internal recycling systems, centralized the prioritization of all facility repairs through Global Sourcing. The program resulted in International Paper generating repair-cost reductions as well as eliminating waste.