What Exactly Is A B Corp Certified Brand?

The global certification you’re about to see a whole lot more of.

Everyone is buzzing about B Corp—you’ve probably seen their logo on some of your favourite brands. Among them? Sunday Riley, Aesop and The Body Shop. But what does it mean for a brand to hold this certification and how do they achieve it?  

When it comes to sustainable business practices, B Corps are leading the way. B Corp is a business itself, which certifies other businesses that meet its standards. Known globally for their notoriously in-depth certification process, which ensures the highest of  standards when it comes to sustainability certification, it gives consumers a certification that they can trust. 

There are currently more than 4,000 B Corps across the world and over 250 in Australia ranging across industries from construction to coffee and cosmetics. Here’s what you need to know.

Why is certification important?

Research shows that not only are nine in 10 Australian consumers more likely to purchase sustainable products but 85 per cent want greater transparency when it comes to sustainability.  

“We’re at a very interesting time where we are seeing businesses that are well articulated, having a positive impact or a clear purpose are in fact able to potentially reduce costs and certainly to build better relationships and drive loyalty amongst customers and partners,” Andrew Davies, CEO of B Corp Australia and New Zealand explains.

With no national regulation, standard or certification around sustainability that’s where B Corp comes in.

What is B Corp? 

In their words, “Certified B Corporations are businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose.”

B Corp creates independent standards, policies, tools, and programs that shift the behaviour, culture, and structure of capitalism. They dig deeper rather than throwing a claim like “Australian made” they ask who made the product? What are the working conditions? How much energy and water is used in your facility? Where are the ingredients sourced from? How much waste is produced and is it disposed of responsibly? 

Cosmetics brand Sunday Riley achieved B Corp certification for the first time in mid-2021. Founder, Sunday Riley explains: “I’ve always been inspired by the power of positive change and being the change we want to see in the world—it was important to me that we continually evolve and make conscious efforts to use business as a force of good.”

How does a brand get certified?

In order to become a B Corporation, a brand will need to achieve a minimum of 80 Business Impact Assessment (BIA) points. This points system evaluates a company across Governance, Workers, Community, Environment and Customers. Companies in Australia must also legally commit to stakeholder governance in your constitution and protect your company’s mission.

For both Sunday Riley and Aesop the B Corp process took 24 months, Riley described it as “lengthy and arduous, considering everything from environmental impact, brand values, office layouts, packaging and company culture.”

For Aesop, Chief Executive Officer Michael O’Keeffe described one of the benefits of going through the B Corp certification process was “to see how we benchmarked against other companies to identify where we could improve.”

What beauty brands hold B Corp certification?

“Aesop’s purpose and practises truly align with what it means to be a certified B Corporation. By joining other B Corps Aesop is amongst a community of leaders that can drive a global movement of people using business as a force for good just as we are doing so within our organisation,” explained O’Keeffe. 

Some B Corp certified beauty brands include Sunday Riley, Aesop, The Body Shop and Sienna. Although new brands are joining the growing marjorie everyday, for the full list of Australian and New Zealand companies, here.

What beauty brands hold B Corp certification?

In order to maintain B Corp status, brands must recertify every three years, in this process they are required to improve their BIA score and update their policies and benchmarks. 

“B Corp Certification isn’t the end goal for us. It’s the start of the journey, as a triple bottom line company, to work towards our North Star of becoming a truly sustainable, regenerative business,” says O’Keeffe.

August 11, 2021

What Exactly Is A B Corp Certified Brand?

The global certification you’re about to see a whole lot more of.

Everyone is buzzing about B Corp—you’ve probably seen their logo on some of your favourite brands. Among them? Sunday Riley, Aesop and The Body Shop. But what does it mean for a brand to hold this certification and how do they achieve it?  

When it comes to sustainable business practices, B Corps are leading the way. B Corp is a business itself, which certifies other businesses that meet its standards. Known globally for their notoriously in-depth certification process, which ensures the highest of  standards when it comes to sustainability certification, it gives consumers a certification that they can trust. 

There are currently more than 4,000 B Corps across the world and over 250 in Australia ranging across industries from construction to coffee and cosmetics. Here’s what you need to know.

Photography: Dave Blake /Model Vanessa Valladares /Hair & Makeup: Nahid Kholghi

Why is certification important?

Research shows that not only are nine in 10 Australian consumers more likely to purchase sustainable products but 85 per cent want greater transparency when it comes to sustainability.  

“We’re at a very interesting time where we are seeing businesses that are well articulated, having a positive impact or a clear purpose are in fact able to potentially reduce costs and certainly to build better relationships and drive loyalty amongst customers and partners,” Andrew Davies, CEO of B Corp Australia and New Zealand explains.

With no national regulation, standard or certification around sustainability that’s where B Corp comes in.

What is B Corp? 

In their words, “Certified B Corporations are businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose.”

B Corp creates independent standards, policies, tools, and programs that shift the behaviour, culture, and structure of capitalism. They dig deeper rather than throwing a claim like “Australian made” they ask who made the product? What are the working conditions? How much energy and water is used in your facility? Where are the ingredients sourced from? How much waste is produced and is it disposed of responsibly? 

Cosmetics brand Sunday Riley achieved B Corp certification for the first time in mid-2021. Founder, Sunday Riley explains: “I’ve always been inspired by the power of positive change and being the change we want to see in the world—it was important to me that we continually evolve and make conscious efforts to use business as a force of good.”

How does a brand get certified?

In order to become a B Corporation, a brand will need to achieve a minimum of 80 Business Impact Assessment (BIA) points. This points system evaluates a company across Governance, Workers, Community, Environment and Customers. Companies in Australia must also legally commit to stakeholder governance in your constitution and protect your company’s mission.

For both Sunday Riley and Aesop the B Corp process took 24 months, Riley described it as “lengthy and arduous, considering everything from environmental impact, brand values, office layouts, packaging and company culture.”

For Aesop, Chief Executive Officer Michael O’Keeffe described one of the benefits of going through the B Corp certification process was “to see how we benchmarked against other companies to identify where we could improve.”

What beauty brands hold B Corp certification?

“Aesop’s purpose and practises truly align with what it means to be a certified B Corporation. By joining other B Corps Aesop is amongst a community of leaders that can drive a global movement of people using business as a force for good just as we are doing so within our organisation,” explained O’Keeffe. 

Some B Corp certified beauty brands include Sunday Riley, Aesop, The Body Shop and Sienna. Although new brands are joining the growing marjorie everyday, for the full list of Australian and New Zealand companies, here.

What beauty brands hold B Corp certification?

In order to maintain B Corp status, brands must recertify every three years, in this process they are required to improve their BIA score and update their policies and benchmarks. 

“B Corp Certification isn’t the end goal for us. It’s the start of the journey, as a triple bottom line company, to work towards our North Star of becoming a truly sustainable, regenerative business,” says O’Keeffe.

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