The GCC® Global Leaders of Change Awards

Eco-Age launched its inaugural GCC® Global Leaders of Change Awards, recognising transformational business leadership in ethical and sustainable development, during the UN Climate Change Conference (COP21) in Paris in December 2015. The awards dinner, hosted by Eco-Age, with Colin and Livia Firth, celebrated businesses, their inspirational leaders and the example they set of the highest corporate standards for ethical and sustainable values.

Eco-Age recognised that business has a vital role to play in addressing the biggest challenges of today – the very ones that were being discussed at COP21, including environmental and social justice, which are all linked by the brands and businesses we all interact with every day. The 2015 inaugural “GCC® Global Leaders of Change” Honourees were:

Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever

Unilever under the leadership of Paul Polman, has launched the market-leading Sustainable Living Plan and the first-of-its-kind Human Rights Report, which highlight Unilever’s goal not only to respect human rights but to actively advance them across all areas of its global business.

Paul Polman says: “I am truly honoured to receive the GCC® Global Leaders of Change Awards. I am personally very excited about the huge opportunities that sustainable solutions and investment strategies can provide. Of course leadership from heads of state will be crucial, but businesses must also set the tone by continuing by continuing to set their targets and working in partnership with others to drive for the implementation of the agenda on the ground. Together – we can change the path of human history”

Marc Bolland, Former Chief Executive, Marks & Spencer

Marks & Spencer under the leadership of Marc Bolland, has trail-blazed the innovative Plan A programme to help protect the planet by sourcing responsibly, reducing waste and helping communities. Plan A was launched in 2007 but M&S has recently introduced Plan A 2020 which consists of 100 new revised and existing commitments with the ultimate goal of becoming the world’s most sustainable retailer.

Marc Bolland says: “We are grateful for the GCC® Global Leaders of Change Awards. At Marks & Spencer, we carry our values forward with integrity with our Plan A commitments and we want to make sure we have the engagement of all stakeholders to come to a more sustainable future together”.

Photo by Emmi Hyyppä

François-Henri Pinault, Chairman And Ceo, Kering

Kering under the leadership of François-Henri Pinault, has been championing sustainable and ethical values for many years, giving them clear leadership in the luxury sector, and has recently launched the transformational and pioneering Environmental Profit & Loss Account (EP&L) and open sourced it to encourage integration of the value of nature into business.

Francois-Henri Pinault says: “It is an honour to receive the GCC® Global Leaders of Change Award. I am a strong believer that sustainability is absolutely vital for our future, but also that it is an amazing field of opportunities as it enables us to create value for the planet, but also socially and economically. With the recent launch of our Environmental Profit and Loss Account (EP&L), Kering and its 37,000 employees are showing their commitment to lead the change”.


Caroline Scheufele, Artistic Director And Co-President, Chopard

Chopard, under the leadership of Caroline Scheufele, has launched the transformational Journey to Sustainable Luxury which has set a global example for the ethical sourcing of raw materials in the complex mining industry. In 2013, they forged a strategic relationship with ARM (The Alliance for Responsible Mining) to source certified Fairmined gold and to mentor artisanal mining communities in Colombia and Bolivia to help the indigenous local communities transform their lives.

Caroline Scheufele says: “As a family business we are very aware of our responsibilities and striving to incorporate sustainable and ethical values in the way that we operate, from raw materials to the real people in our supply chain. It is not an easy journey that we are undertaking, but it is the right one. The Journey to Sustainable Luxury is our commitment to a multi-year programme that will ensure that we are working towards improving not only ourselves, but the entire industry in making fundamental change”.