Guerlain and the environment: 3 questions for Laurent Boillot

Perfumes & Cosmetics


In conjunction with the COP21 World Climate Summit, of which LVMH is a partner, we asked five CEOs from our different business sectors to talk about the importance of the environment for their respective Houses. Laurent Boillot, CEO of Guerlain, presents initiatives taken by his House “in the name of Beauty”.

Why is the environment so important for Guerlain?
Since the creation of Guerlain, the founders of the House have always strived, “in the name of Beauty”, to protect and preserve natural ingredients, which have been the source of their inspiration and creations.  Eight years ago when became head of Guerlain I naturally wanted to make the strength of these values a visible part of our strategy. We thus created a Sustainable Development department, as well as a steering committee with representatives from our different sectors. Our approach is structured by six key objectives, which now figure among the objectives of the Executive Committee, putting sustainable development right at the heart of our strategy. Today we aim to go even further, pursuing bold initiatives such as eco-designs for our products and our points of sale. Making strong commitments to a more sustainable world creates tremendous opportunities to go further in integrating and promoting a culture of “beautiful” and “good”, the source and the foundation of our prosperity.

Is there one particular initiative by your House of which you are especially proud?
I’m proud of many things we’ve done at Guerlain and the positive emulation created by these initiatives is very inspiring. But if I had to choose one it would be the sustainable systems we have helped develop to preserve biodiversity. We have teamed with local partners in several areas we believe are especially vital. We’ve signed a ten-year Sustainable Development agreement with the Breton Black Honeybee Conservatory on the island of Ouessant, an agreement with the Tianzi experimental nature reserve in China for orchids, and we’ve helped another partner reintroduce vetiver in its original habitat in India. These programs will be joined by other sustainable development initiatives in the future. What’s more, since the bee is both symbolic of Guerlain and extremely vulnerable today, we’ve decided to go further and support an NGO that’s working to reintroduce bees in Europe.

How will the creation of the LVMH Carbon Fund help Guerlain reduce its greenhouse gas emissions?
We decided to measure our progress right from the launch of our sustainable development policy, in particular by conducting a carbon audit. We repeat these measurements every year and we aim to cut our emissions to half the 2007 levels by 2020, a goal we formally announced in signing the Paris Climate Action Charter last October. Since the main source of our emissions is transport, we know that promoting maritime transport and limiting airplanes for long-distance shipping is a top priority.

The carbon fund validates our efforts to drastically reduce our carbon footprint and motivates us to go even further. I’m confident that we will demonstrate both creativity and innovation to continue to reduce our environmental impact and ultimately become carbon neutral.