Corporate Press Releases

More than 8,000 Avon Representatives in Sao Paulo Celebrate Company’s 125th Anniversary

Results of New Groundbreaking Study on Domestic Violence Revealed

$120,000 in Avon Believe Fund Grants Awarded to Local Organizations

Jun 28, 2011

SAO PAULO - June 28, 2011 – Avon Chairman and CEO Andrea Jung joined more than 8,000 independent Avon Sales Representatives in São Paulo to celebrate the company’s 125th anniversary.  The two-day event marked the 11th stop for the Avon Believe World Tour, which celebrates the company’s heritage and belief in its mission to empower women.

“Avon was founded in 1886, and has inspired women to become financially independent ever since,” commented Jung. “Today, Avon is the largest engine of economic opportunity for women on earth, serving more than six million Representatives in over 100 countries,” she added.

During the event, Jung presented two US$60,000 grants from the $2 million Avon Global Believe Fund. The fund was created this year to help support women’s domestic violence shelters and agencies in each of the 16 cities on the tour, as well as other Avon markets.  “As the company for women, Avon feels the responsibility to take a leading role in the movement for empowering women around the world, and we believe we can truly make a difference,” emphasized Jung. Avon and the Avon Foundation for Women are funding an international network of outstanding nonprofit organizations to help them provide critical life-saving services for victims of domestic violence and their families. This global effort also aims to draw attention to the alarming lack of adequate services for women and children who are victims of domestic violence in communities everywhere.

Local Global Believe Fund Grant Recipients
São Paulo ‘s Associação Mulheres pela Paz (Brazilian Peace Women Organization) and the Instituto Maria da Penha, located in the Northeastern state of Ceará, each received a Global Believe Fund grant. The Instituto Maria da Penha was established by one of the great activists involved in fighting violence against women in Brazil, Maria da Penha Maia, whose name was given to the 2006 Federal law enacted to fight domestic and family violence against women. Da Penha, who was left paralyzed after her husband tried to kill her, was on hand to accept the grant on behalf of the Instituto.

Groundbreaking Research on Domestic Violence
During a press conference, Jung unveiled the results of a new Instituto Avon study on attitudes in Brazil toward domestic violence.  Instituto Avon conducted the survey, a follow-up to a 2009 study, in conjunction with research institute Ipsos, the Palas Athena Association and the Patrícia Galvão institute. Jung presented the findings of the survey, “Percepções Sobre a Violência Doméstica contra a Mulher No Brasi” (Perceptions of Domestic Violence against Women in Brazil), along with the Chief Minister of the Special Secretariat for Women’s Policies, Iriny Lopes; Ipsos research scientist Paulo Roberto Cidade; and sociologist Fátima Pacheco Jordão, a member of the council of the Patrícia Galvão Institute.

The research indicates that Brazil is showing progress when it comes to people’s understanding of domestic violence issues, but there is still a lot of work to be done.
•    94% of those surveyed knew about the Maria da Penha law but only 13% have an in-depth understanding of it.
•    A majority of respondents listed emotional or mental abuse as a form of violence against women, indicating an advanced view and understanding of the issue.
•    52% of women respondents said that judges or the police would not take the charge seriously.

The study is available at (

Other 125th Anniversary Programs
In addition to the Avon Believe World Tour and Avon Global Believe Fund, Avon is also celebrating 125 years of empowering women with its previously announced program, Avon Voices, the first-ever online singing talent search for women and songwriting competition for women and men. A renowned judging panel of music industry leaders from around the world includes: Fergie, six-time Grammy award winner; Diane Warren, legendary songwriter; Natasha Bedingfield, Grammy nominated singer/songwriter; Delta Goodrem, Australian Artist of the Decade; Lea Salonga, Filipina singer and actress; Ivete Sangalo, Brazil’s biggest pop star; and Russian sensation Valeriya.  The program launched in December 2010 in more than 60 countries, and invites people around the world to share their voices, join in and sing out.   More information is available at

Avon has partnered with the Hagley Museum and Library to create a digital corporate archive, including Avon brochures, advertising and product images spanning the company’s 125-year history of empowering women.  Avon’s digital corporate archive can be accessed at

About Avon
Avon, the company for women, is a leading global beauty company, with over $10 billion in annual revenue. As the world's largest direct seller, Avon markets to women in more than 100 countries through approximately 6.5 million active independent Avon Sales Representatives. Avon's product line includes beauty products, as well as fashion and home products, and features such well-recognized brand names as Avon Color, ANEW (Renew in Brazil), Skin-So-Soft, Advance Techniques and Avon Naturals. Learn more about Avon and its products at

About the Avon Foundation for Women and Avon Global Philanthropy
Avon is a leading global leader in social actions, focusing on causes of special interest to women. Through 2010, more than US$ 800 million was donated in more than 50 countries to those causes through the U.S.-based Avon Foundation. Avon’s social responsibility efforts support mainly research on breast cancer and the expansion of medical services to women with the disease, with its Avon Breast Cancer Crusade (called Avon Against Breast Cancer in Brazil), and also efforts to put an end to violence against women with its campaign Speak Out Against Domestic Violence (in Brazil, Speak with No Fear – No to Domestic Violence).
Avon also responds generously to provide support for relief and recovery efforts in times of major natural disasters and emergencies. The company’s global markets sell special products to raise funds for breast cancer and domestic violence, conduct hundreds of events that raise funds and awareness for these causes, and provide critical life-saving information to women.

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