Global consumer products company Unilever is using its purchasing power to implement diversity and inclusion efforts to its supply base.
The London-based company announced Jan. 21 that its suppliers will have to ensure that its workers "earn at least a living wage or income" by 2030.
It will also spend 2 billion euros ($2.4 billion) with suppliers owned and managed by people from "underrepresented groups" by 2025 and will seek "pioneering new employment models for our employees and equipping 10 million young people with essential skills to prepare them for job opportunities by 2030."
Unilever also said it will help 5 million small and midsized companies grow through "access to skills, finance and technology" to help them compete. That project may cover small retailers in addition to firms in the supply chain.
"The two biggest threats that the world currently faces are climate change and social inequality," CEO Alan Jope wrote in a news release. "The past year has undoubtedly widened the social divide, and decisive and collective action is needed to build a society that helps to improve livelihoods, embraces diversity, nurtures talent and offers opportunities for everyone. ... Without a healthy society, there cannot be a healthy business."