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Jeremy Schwartz was CEO of The Body Shop, the first purpose-led company in the world created by Anita Roddick back in 1976.
In 2015 Schwartz, as CEO, has set about reinventing a new purpose for the 21st century. His ambition was to articulate a purpose that put the creation of profitable growth through customer engagement at its core, yet at the same time would capture a call to action for The Body Shop to become the most sustainable global company in the world. This was achieved and more importantly Schwartz, as CEO, drove the business strategy and annual planning from the purpose through a stream of product innovation (such as using only 1 to 5 ingredients compared to the usual 15 plus) and a stronger sourcing strategy with the creation of new fruit growing cooperatives using techniques to enrich biodiversity and give guaranteed superior income to local farmers. It also inspired the marketing efforts including the largest ever petition, with 8m customer signatures, being handed to the UN to demand a global ban on animal testing on cosmetics forever. The power of the purpose contributed to valuing The Body Shop at 1bn€ and its successful sale to Natura a purpose led Brazilian cosmetic company.
Until April 2019 Jeremy Schwartz had a role of COO and joint CEO of Pandora, the largest jewellery company in the world available in 90 countries across 2500 boutique stores and 5k independent jewellers. He spearheaded the creation of an integrated brand and business purpose that underpinned a turnaround transformation program called Reigniting a Passion for Pandora. The results will be coming to market from September 2019 as the purpose is driving a complete redesign of the product, retail, ecom and brand offer.
As both a CEO, Managing Director of L’Oreal UK, European innovation director for Coca-Cola, in which he invented Coke Zero, and as CEO of a start up purpose led AIM listed food company Glorious! Schwartz has many stories and examples of how purpose led leadership drives both business and brand strategy and employee and stakeholder engagement. Schwartz has been a strong advocate for purpose led business leadership and was the architect of a new articulation for J Sainsburys in 2005 that inspired the transformation program ‘Making Sainsburys Great Again’. This turned around the company fortune from ten years of decline into ten years of growth. The purpose inspired activities that recruited three million more customers through new product initiatives such as Sainsbury’s Basics to a highly visible customer engagement campaign called Active Kids. Year after year this has grown to a point where Sainsbury’s strategically sponsored the 2012 Paralympics and becoming the first every supermarket Olympic sponsor.
Jeremy Schwartz offers very concrete advice and experience on how to go about writing an inspiring and useful purpose, how to mobilise an organisation around it and how to use it on a daily and annual basis to drive the company strategy and plans across all functions and business activities.