LONDON, June 13, 2013 /CNW/ - The B Team, a global non-profit founded by
Sir Richard Branson and Jochen Zeitz, revealed its starting line-up of
business leaders today. They will work together to deliver a new way of
doing business that prioritises people and planet alongside profit - a
"Plan B" for businesses the world over.
The leaders joining The B Team founders Sir Richard Branson and Jochen
Shari Arison, Owner, Arison Group
Kathy Calvin, President and CEO, United Nations Foundation
Arianna Huffington, Chair, President & Editor In Chief, The Huffington
Post Media Group
Mo Ibrahim, Founder, Celtel
Guilherme Leal, Founder & Co-Chairman, Natura
Strive Masiyiwa, Founder & Chairman, Econet Wireless
Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Coordinating Minister for the Economy and
Minister of Finance, Government of Nigeria
François-Henri Pinault, CEO & Chairman, Kering
Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever
Ratan Tata, Chairman Emeritus, Tata Group
Zhang Yue, Founder and Chairman, Broad Group
Professor Muhammad Yunus, Chairman, Yunus Centre
Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland, Deputy Chair, The Elders (Honorary Leader)
Mary Robinson, Secretary, The Elders and President, Mary Robinson
Foundation - Climate Justice (Honorary Leader)
The initial "B Leaders" have been selected by a global network of
advisors. They have come together as a group of committed business
leaders to use their collective voice to help engage other leaders and
will act as a catalyst to help deliver "Plan B". They will work with
partners to break down entrenched barriers and ensure there is a clear
The B Team will address three initial Challenges: "The Future of
Leadership", "The Future Bottom Line" and "The Future of Incentives" to
help focus business away from short term gain and to balance the long
term benefits for our people and our planet.
In a live online broadcast to over 500 gatherings in more than 115
cities around the world, The B Team Leaders also issued a joint Declaration today (bteam.org/about/declaration), acknowledging key global problems such as growing inequality,
unemployment and the unsustainable use of natural resources. The group
commits to accelerating a movement of leaders around the world driven
by a better way of doing business.
"Today we want to start a global conversation on a "Plan B" for
business," said co-founder Sir Richard Branson, "We are working with
government agencies, the social sector, and business leaders to help
get on top of some of the world's seemingly intractable challenges. We
are keen to listen, learn and share with others to build businesses
that do what's right for people and the planet."
"Business is integral to society, but it has also created most of the
negative environmental challenges of this century," co-founder Jochen
Zeitz said today, "The B Team will help to catalyse a shift away from
the existing short-term, unsustainable mindset, towards the long-term
interest of people, the planet and the wider economy. Tackling these
three challenges is a starting point for a "Plan B" to form."
"The Future of Leadership" Challenge will seek to accelerate a new kind
of inclusive leadership underpinned by a moral compass of being fair,
honest, positive and creative (bteam.org/about/compass-beliefs). This is founded on cooperation and will be aimed at generating
long-term value for society, the economy and the environment.
"The evolution of business leadership away from a focus on short-term
profits is essential for the future generation of leaders," said
Arianna Huffington. "We need a "Plan B" for the way business is
managed, starting with leadership more committed to well-being, wisdom
and sustainable business success. The only way to enjoy a long-term
healthy bottom line is with a workplace that supports the well-being of
employees. We want to accelerate that shift by putting the spotlight
on business leaders at the forefront of this movement and connecting
them with each other."
The "Future Bottom Line" Challenge seeks to accelerate a move away from
single-minded financial "short-termism", towards a focus on the long
term, and will aim to expand corporate accountability beyond financial
gains to include negative and positive contributions to the economy,
environment and society.
In driving forward the "Future of Incentives" Challenge, The B Team will
work with partners to develop new corporate and employee incentive
structures and to identify and map both positive and harmful subsidies.
This will help to shift market and business behavior towards incentives
that maximize social, environmental and economic benefit.
"Positive market incentives operating in the public interest are too few
and far between, and are also up against a seemingly never-ending
expansion of perverse incentives and lobbying," said Mo Ibrahim, "There
are models that can help change this and we will work to create new
incentives in dialogue with businesses, the social sector and
The B Team will be holding a series of community events over the coming
months. Input from stakeholders participating in today's global digital
gathering will contribute to The B Team's plans for these first three
Challenges and the formation of a comprehensive "Plan B" for business.
The B Team is also encouraging the general public to submit their views
on a new charter for better business at www.bteam.org.
To register for the live online broadcast scheduled at 9:30 AM BST, 13
June 2013 please go to: media.bte.am
About The B Team
The B Team is 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
The initial B Leaders include: Shari Arison, Sir Richard Branson, Kathy
Calvin, Arianna Huffington, Mo Ibrahim, Guilherme Leal, Strive
Masiyiwa, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, François-Henri Pinault, Paul Polman,
Ratan Tata, Zhang Yue, Professor Muhammad Yunus and Jochen Zeitz.
Joining The B Team as Honorary B Leaders are Mary Robinson representing
People and Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland representing Planet.
Working with a global community of advisors and partners, The B Team
seeks to develop and implement a Plan B for business that puts people
and planet alongside profit. The B Leaders will focus on execution and
action, catalysing and amplifying others' efforts by undertaking
specific global Challenges where their collective voice can make a
The B Team Founders and Co-Chairs are Sir Richard Branson and Jochen
Zeitz. They are joined by supporters who make up the Founders Circle
including Derek Handley (founding CEO), Havas Media, Strive Masiyiwa,
Joann McPike, Blake Mycoskie, Kering/PUMAVision, The Rockefeller
Foundation, The Tiffany & Co. Foundation and Virgin Unite (initial
incubator of The B Team). For more information, please visit: www.bteam.org or follow us @thebteamhq.
SOURCE: The B Team
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