L'OCCITANE commits for Japan
4 years after the tsunami, L'OCCITANE pursues its commitment to Japonese entrepreneurs
For more than 15 years, L’OCCITANE has developed internationally and particularly in Japan:, L’OCCITANE has built strong economic, cultural and humans links with this country with more than 95 stores and 800 employees. After the tsunami in 2011, the group has naturally been involved in the reconstruction of the worst affected region. Entrepreneurship is a strong value for L’OCCITANE, hold by its founder Olivier Baussan. It is through this commitment that the group has chosen to focus its support for a sustainable and lasting reconstruction. In the Tôhoku area, the projects aim to boost the local economy, reinforce social links within the community and support youth entrepreneurship.
BUILDING A LOCAL COMMUNITY MARKET
In Japan as in France, local markets bring together entrepreneurs, gather people and create links within the urban and rural communities. L’OCCITANE, in its early beginnings, has started in the markets of Provence where Olivier Baussan sold his first essential oils and soaps in the 80s. It has been natural for L’OCCITANE to support, for the second year, the creation of a local entrepreneurs’ market in the Tôhoku area, in collaboration with NGOs Civic Force and Network Orange. This project plays a key role in the process of rebuilding the devastated city.
In 2 years, 35 entrepreneurs have been selected to participate in workshops in order to consolidate their business plan, before displaying their products on the market.
A professional jury evaluated these entrepreneurs and 3 winners are invited to discover the traditional French markets and enjoy the Provencal expertise for the enhancement of local production.
DID YOU KNOW?
In 2014, L’OCCITANE has supported 2 new projects, in order to boost the devastated region and reinforce social links.
The L’OCCITANE Funds is supporting the Youth Venture program with the NGO Ashoka, first social entrepreneurs’ network in the world. This project aims at building a network of young Japanese, full of energy and determination, to lead them in their entrepreneurial project. 350 young have been supported in 2014.
The project of the NGO Kenko Terakoya aims at restoring communication in the city and promotes well-being in the devastated areas. In Fukushima area, 8 instructors have been trained in order to improve the living conditions of the 800 people still living in temporary houses.