Mary Robinson was in London on June 13 for the official launch of The B Team, a not-for-profit initiative that has been formed by a group of global business leaders to create a future where the purpose of business is to be a driving force for social, envi
Mary Robinson was in London on June 13 for the official launch of The B Team, a not-for-profit initiative that has been formed by a group of global business leaders to create a future where the purpose of business is to be a driving force for social, environmental and economic benefit.
The B Team’s mission is to deliver a ‘Plan B’ that puts people and planet alongside profit.
They believe that ‘Plan A’ – where companies have been driven by the profit motive alone – is no longer acceptable.
To begin its mission, the B Team is undertaking three key challenges:
- The Future Bottom Line: To include people and planet in business’ bottom line by focussing on the long term and expanding corporate transparency and accountability
- The Future of Incentives: To catalyse corporate and employee incentives that benefit people and planet alongside profit.
- The Future of Leadership: To ignite a movement of leaders committed equally to people, planet and profit.
“The B team provides a real opportunity for the business community to develop innovative solutions to global challenges such as poverty, climate change and access to sustainable energy,” Mrs Robinson said. “As Honorary Leader, I will champion the voices of the poor, vulnerable and marginalised so that business leaders are encouraged to find ways to respond to their needs.”
The business community is an important constituency in creating demand for climate action. Through the Climate Justice Dialogue the Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice and the World Resources Institute are working with representatives of the private sector to develop a climate justice narrative that motivates them to champion urgent, equitable and ambitious action on climate change. The B-team can provide leadership to this initiative and carry new positive messages to political leaders on the need to raise climate change to the top of the agenda in the interests of vulnerable people, human rights and sustainable development.
The initial B Leaders which make up the B Team are:
- Sir Richard Branson, Founder Virgin Group, Co-Chair and Co-Founder, The B Team
- Jochen Zeitz, Director of Kering and Chairman of the board’s Sustainable Development Committee; Co-Chair and Co-Founder, The B Team
- Shari Arison, Owner, Arison Group
- Kathy Calvin, President and CEO, UN Foundation
- Arianna Huffington, Chair, President and Editor-in-Chief, The Huffington Post Media Group
- Mo Ibrahim, Founder, Celtel
- Guilherme Leal, Founder and Co-Chairman, Natura
- Strive Masiyiwa, Founder and Chairman, Econet
- Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance, Nigeria
- François-Henri Pinault, CEO and Chairman, Kering
- Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever
- Ratan Tata, Chairman Emeritus, Tata Group
- Professor Muhammad Yunus, Chairman, Yunus Centre
- Zhang Yue, Chairman and Founder, Broad Group China
Honorary B Leaders are Mary Robinson, representing People, and Dr Gro Harlem Brundtland, Deputy Chair, The Elders, representing Planet.