Becoming part of the solution to the challenges facing society
As part of the L’Oréal for the Future programme, the Group chose to go beyond its internal transformation to help develop solutions to major social and environmental challenges. To that end, it chose to earmark 100 million euros for impact investing.
Addressing the most urgent environmental issues
Impact investing is socially responsible investing that seeks to create a positive social or environmental impact while also providing a financial return. As part of its L’Oréal for the Future programme, the Group decided to focus its investments on two key environmental challenges: biodiversity regeneration and the acceleration of the circular economy.
100 million euros have been earmarked for impact investing via two funds: 50 million have already been invested in the L’Oréal Fund for Nature Regeneration, which supports projects that aim to restore damaged ecosystems; another 50 million will be invested through a fund dedicated to the circular economy that supports projects, technologies and companies that are innovating in the fields of recycling and plastic waste management.
Christophe Babule, Chief Financial Officer, L'Oréal, and Alexandra Palt, Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer and L’Oréal Foundation, detail the essential role played by Finance in relation to the Group’s sustainable development commitments.
Why invest in nature regeneration? Better management of biodiversity could help sequester up to 30% of greenhouse gas emissions, which must be eliminated. Yet only 3% of investments designed to prevent climate change go to initiatives that preserve biodiversity. Projects financed by the L’Oréal Fund for Nature Regeneration will have a positive environmental impact by renewing natural forest and ocean ecosystems. However, they will also have a positive socio-economic impact for the people and communities involved in them.
Fully aware of the growing strain on natural resources, the global waste crisis and the role the circular economy can play in combating climate change, L’Oréal has also created the L’Oréal Fund for the Circular Economy. This 50-million-euro impact investment fund will finance innovative projects in recycling, plastic waste management and materials produced by the bioeconomy.
Supporting the most vulnerable women
To mitigate the negative impact of the unprecedented situation created by Covid-19, L’Oréal also created a 50-million-euro charitable fund to support non-profits in their efforts to help vulnerable women, who were the first victims of the social and economic crisis caused by the pandemic. Women are more exposed to job and revenue losses. They also represent the majority of single parents, and more and more of them are having to rely on food banks and soup kitchens to meet their most basic needs. Moreover, during lockdowns, domestic and sexual violence against women increased around the globe.
This 50-million-euro fund will support the efforts of non-profit organisations on the ground in combating financial insecurity, helping women find jobs and a place in the community, providing emergency aid, particularly for refugee women or women with disabilities, combating violence against women and supporting victims, and helping women access education.