Global News

Back to featured stories

Avon expands its support for women’s entrepreneurialism and economic participation

Avon CEO hosts roundtable sessions focused on removing barriers to women’s entrepreneurialism across the world

Jul 4, 2018

On Tuesday 3 July, Avon CEO Jan Zijderveld chaired a roundtable discussion in London with leading thinkers and activists on women’s economic empowerment.

The discussion, aimed at driving the conversation around this important issue forward, touched on some of the most pressing issues facing women currently being discussed on the world stage.

A group of diverse attendees brought expertise from a number of arenas including the Oxford Economics, the Global Thinkers Forum and Digital Mums.

Key topics discussed at the event included the increased need for more widespread flexible working options; the importance of mentoring and access to life-long learning; and helping to shape macro changes in order to positively affect change at the individual level.

Attendees considered both the ripple effect of empowering one woman, who improves not only her life, but also betters the lives of her family, community, the economy, and the world; and the inverse ripple effect, where by bettering the world we improve economies, communities, families, and individual women.

One of the objectives of the session was to explore ways that Avon can continue to have a positive impact on the global situation regarding women’s empowerment, with particular focus on economic success.

The group felt that Avon is in a unique position to affect many of these key areas – not least by leveraging its population of six million Representatives, who generate independent earnings through their own beauty businesses.

Jan commented: “At Avon we have an opportunity to play an even bigger role in advancing women’s economic participation through our network and our business model, which is built entirely around helping more women to be successful, in their own way and on their own terms.”

Next week Jan will convene a round table with thought leaders in New York. The input and working relationships established in these two sessions will feed into the development of the new Avon Academy – an initiative that will provide learning and development opportunities, and a support network, for Avon’s network of six million beauty entrepreneurs worldwide.



UK Roundtable Attendees:

Jan Zijderveld, CEO, Avon; Akhter Mateen, UK Board Member of Malala Fund; Elizabeth Filippouli, Founder and CEO, Global Thinkers Forum; Emmanuel Julien, Deputy Director, International Labour Organization; Helen McEachern, CEO of the Cherie Blair Foundation; Ian Mulheirn, Director of Consulting, Oxford Economics; Linda Scott, Emeritus Professor of University of Oxford; Jane Keeper, Director of Operations, Refuge; Jennifer Woodside, Director of External Relations, Girls Not Brides; Nikki Cochrane, Co-Founder, Digital Mums; Sarah Nancollas, CEO, World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts.

Avon Timeline

Avon Timeline
Downloadable PDF(131 KB)


For in-depth corporate archives, please visit Avon's online digital archive collection at the Hagley Museum. Click here to launch the site.