Customer Stories - Citadelle Group

How a major player in mobility commits to decarbonization through expert carbon measurement and fine modeling of an action plan

The Company

Long-standing distributor of mobility products and services in France overseas territories

The Citadelle group is a mobility operator and a major player in the retail and vehicle distribution landscape in the French overseas territories. The group, which employs over 600 people, owns several companies specializing in automotive retailing in Martinique, Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Mayotte and Reunion Island.

The company's activities include the sale and rental of new and used vehicles, both in physical stores and online, the sale of tires and spare parts and, more recently, the launch ofshared mobility services.

The group represents and distributes brands such as Suzuki, Toyota, Citroën, Audi, Volkswagen, Seat and Hyundai in its territories. The Group is responsible for the marketing strategy, positioning and pricing of the brands it represents.


Rising to the challenge of transition in a highly emissive business sector

The Citadelle Group has always striven to support the dynamism of the French overseas territories and to play a part in their economic and social development. As an automotive distributor and mobility operator, the group has long been aware that its business has a significant impact on the environment, not least because of its high contribution to greenhouse gas emissions.

As part of its strategy of transition, adaptation and anticipation of climate risks, Citadelle Group's management wished to commit fully to a process of transparency when it comes to its impact and the deployment of actions to limit its negative impacts as much as possible.

In this context, the Citadelle group wished to be supported in :

Acquire the ability to measure its carbon footprint across all emissions scopes with a high degree of accuracy, despite the diversity of its retail activities.

Carry out this measurement on an annual basis in order to monitor its footprint over the long term, and internalize as many skills as possible in order to repeat the exercise independently after the first measurement.

Be able to analyze emissions in detail, by item and by scope, in order to compare changes in emissions items and track progress and any regression over time.

Be able to model a concrete action plan to commit, without pretence, to a credible emissions reduction trajectory, and to monitor this trajectory over time.

Traace expertise

A precise carbon measurement on which to base a concrete action plan

Traace supported the Citadelle group's teams in carrying out their complete scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon accounting for the year 2021, while passing on the necessary methodological knowledge to enable them today to carry out their annual carbon footprint measurement in complete autonomy on the Traace platform.

In order to obtain the most accurate scope 3 measurement possible, the Traace teams provided the necessary level of expertise in calculating the carbon footprint of vehicles, with the greatest possible granularity in taking into account different fuel types and vehicle segments.

Traace also enabled the Citadelle group to model a catalog of emission reduction actions, as well as different reduction trajectories by perimeter (country, brand, activity, etc.). The platform's interfaces enable teams to visualize the potential impact of the actions they choose to include in their action plan, based on their carbon footprint, which will be reviewed annually. Modelling the carbon impact of action levers enables teams to prioritize their strategy in an informed way, in order to maximize the positive impact of their climate strategy.

The results

Prioritize action based on a reliable, usable carbon analysis

After an assisted carbon measurement in 2021, the Citadelle Group's teams carried out their 2022 carbon footprint assessment in total autonomy on the Traace platform . The Citadelle Group was thus able to analyze the carbon footprint of its activities in detail. For example:

➡️ Most of the group's greenhouse gas emissions are due to the use of products sold and leased, accounting for 70% . Vehicle use essentially corresponds to the consumption of fuel and/or electricity by the vehicles sold over their lifetime.

➡️ The use of new gasoline-powered vehicles sold by the Group accounts for 30% of the Group's total emissions. As combustion and hybrid vehicles are much more emissive in use and currently account for the bulk of the Group's sales, they represent the bulk of the Group's emissions in this category, 100 times more than electric vehicles. It should be noted that electricity in the DROM-COM is almost 10 times more carbon-intensive than in mainland France.‍

➡️ Purchasing accounts for 19% of the total carbon footprint. Of which 13% for the purchase of new and used vehicles and 4% for the purchase of spare parts.

➡️ Freight, essentially upstream, accounts for 9% of total emissions, notably due to air freight, which weighs in at 8% of total emissions.

Indirect GHG emissions, associated with scope 3 of the emissions categories, therefore represent 99% of Citadelle Group emissions, and are therefore the main field for exploring levers for decarbonizing the Group's activities.

While the Group is partly dependent on external developments to reduce its footprint
, both in terms of decarbonizing products sold and the development of low-carbon electricity recharging equipment for end-users, it can nonetheless activate a range of levers to decarbonize.

In terms of activity, car dealerships account for 91% of the Group's total footprint, and it is therefore necessary for the Group to involve all its subsidiaries in clear action plans, so that concrete actions can be taken on the ground.

A detailed analysis of the carbon footprint therefore enabled Citadelle to identify and model the carbon reduction potential of a set of actions that will form the core of the Group's decarbonization strategy, and to assign them appropriately to the business sub-perimeters of countries, subsidiaries and brands.

➡️ Diversifying the offering with new forms of mobility to embrace the profound trend of changing consumer habits in terms of mode of travel, from individual ownership to multimodal use of soft and shared mobility.

➡️ Raising awareness and training Group employees and, above all, customers in eco-driving. Eco-responsible driving optimizes the fuel consumption of vehicles in use and reduces GHG emissions and other associated pollutants.

➡️ Modify the product mix promoted in dealerships to encourage the sale of more environmentally-friendly vehicles . While the Group, as a distributor of multi-brand vehicles, is dependent on automakers' choices in terms of the range marketed, it can nevertheless influence the product mix promoted to consumers.

➡️ For procurement, reduce the need to use airplanes by working on better order planning.

Ready to take up the challenge of decarbonization, convinced of the strategic interest of the approach, the Citadelle Group has found in TRAACE the ideal partner to carry out rigorous, long-term work.

Our aim is to measure in order to understand, and to understand in order to act. Regular exchanges with our internal resources enable us to set relevant hypotheses and refine the decarbonization levers envisaged.

The Tabga company, which recommended Traace to us, is also supporting us in this ambitious and exciting adventure.

Emeline Reynal de Saint-Michel
MACS Service Manager
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