The name change was only the beginning. Kering—formerly known as the PPR Group—plans to become the world’s most sustainable luxury-goods conglomerate, Marie-Claire Daveu, the company’s chief sustainability officer, announced at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit in Denmark on Thursday. Daveu said that the firm, which operates high-end labels like Alexander McQueen, Gucci, Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Stella McCartney, and Puma, aims to achieve 100 percent sustainable sourcing of its gold, diamonds, leather, skins and furs, as well as paper and packaging across all its brands by 2016. “Staying silent and doing nothing is no longer acceptable,” Daveu said.
THE COMPANY THAT CARES
That evening, Kering received the 2014 Global Leadership Award in Sustainable Apparel not only for the development of the Environmental Profit & Loss Account, a “natural capital” accounting and reporting system that assigns a monetary value to the ecological impact of a company’s business activities and supply-chain operations, but also its decision to implement the scheme conglomerate-wide.
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“Until we begin to assign monetary values to environmental and social externalities, market dynamics will continue to devalue nature and social welfare,” said Michael Schragger, director of the Sustainable Fashion Academy, a not-for-profit industry consortium that directs the award. “But if we use the language and tools that markets and financial actors understand, we significantly increase our ability to demonstrate where real value lies. This is crucial for the apparel industry, which relies on natural and human resources for its continued success.”