Damien Pellé, former head of sustainable development at Galeries Lafayette, joins SMCP
In the last few seasons, the SMCP group, owner of Sandro, Maje, Claudie Pierlot and Fursac has been increasingly committed to improving the environmental performance of its labels and the traceability of its products. At the publication of the latest quarterly results, the group announced that its board of directors has decided to set up “a CSR committee in charge of monitoring social, corporate and environmental responsibility issues, and of taking them into account in defining and implementing the group's strategy.” And on this front, the group’s management team was strengthened with a high-calibre appointment at the start of the year.
SMCP, which generates an annual revenue in excess of €1 billion, has in fact put Damien Pellé in charge of CSR policy and corporate communication. He reports to Nathalie Malavoy, head of human resources and CSR at SMCP Group. In the last two years, the French group led by Isabelle Guichot has introduced a spate of CSR initiatives. It has increased the presence in its product range of materials with a lower environmental impact, has strengthened its supply chain traceability, launched resale initiatives at Sandro and Maje, and grown the share of women sitting on its executive committee and board of directors to over 50%.
In the fashion industry, Pellé is an executive whose opinion is well respected. The French executive, a former consultant at Price Waterhouse Coopers, started working in 2015 in the CSR policy department at Galeries Lafayette, and in 2018 he was named head of sustainable development for Galeries Lafayette and BHV Marais. In this role, he notably spearheaded ‘Go for Good’, the flagship initiative bringing the department store’s most sustainable products to the customers’ attention, launched in May 2018. Starting out with some 10,000 products and 500 brands, the initiative now comprises 1,000 brands, whose products make up more than 20% of the group's assortment. The goal is for Go for Good products to account for over a quarter of the Galeries Lafayette’s product range by 2024.
Pellé undertook a new challenge by joining the SMCP group at the start of 2023. His mission will be supporting the group’s labels along the sustainability path they have already embarked upon. According to SMCP, his “task is to ensure the successful implementation of the commitments already undertaken, and to continue to expand the group's CSR policies, making them increasingly innovative and integrated within the SMCP group’s business model.”
As for Galeries Lafayette, the group has decided to appoint as head of sustainable development Karine Viel, who reports to Frédérique Chemaly, the group’s head of human resources and CSR.
Viel is a graduate of the HEC business school. She started her business career in France with Kraft Foods, working in marketing for the coffee and chocolate sectors. After about 10 years, Viel joined Comité 21, an organisation that disseminates know-how on social and environmental responsibility issues in large corporations and the public administration. She then brought her CSR expertise to French retail group Monoprix in 2012. At Monoprix, part of the Rallye Group, Viel expanded the range of sustainable products and worked on diversity and environmental footprint issues, also setting up social and environmental reporting tools. Until January, Viel was head of sustainable development at Monoprix, as well as CEO of the Monoprix foundation.
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