Milan, Friday 15 November - At Palazzo Mezzanotte, as part of the BookCity 2019 initiatives — the eighth edition of the great Milanese exhibition dedicated to books, reading and their boosters — we presented “Made in B-Italy”, the benefit corporation book that “attempts to give a systematic account of how an Italian path to sustainable business is possible” (Lele Rozza, Director of AssoBenefit). It marks the intermediate stage of a long journey on which we and our benefit corporation colleagues are at the forefront of changing the global economic paradigm.
The “Made in B-Italy” project reached its first milestone in December 2018 with the foundation of AssoBenefit, the national association with which all Ialian benefit corporations are affiliated. It was designed to respond to the 2017 appeal by Pedro Tarak, one of the fathers of the global B Corp movement: “Italy must uphold its record as an early adopter of the Benefit model. You are the first sovereign state to have introduced a benefit corporation law, as well as the country where the benefit corporation community is experiencing the most rapid growth.”
“I was struck by Pedro Tarak’s words.
Suddenly, all the pieces of the puzzle came together in a clear, inescapable vision:
my startup, my vocation, my ideas and my values as an entrepreneur.
The result was ‘Made in B-Italy’, a path towards the redemption of an economic model that has become unsustainable. This ambitious dream can only be achieved through teamwork,
so I am honoured to have been one of the founding members of AssoBenefit.”
Laura Gori, Founder & CEO of Way2Global Srl SB
The Honourable Mauro del Barba, the father of the law on Italian benefit corporations and president of AssoBenefit, immediately came to our side as a staunch advocate of the project. Del Barba, who firmly believes in the need for a new model of economic development, was the author of the law introduced in Italy in 2016 on benefit corporations as an extraordinary example of excellence and social innovation, which deserves to be exported and to set an example throughout the world.
“As a translation company, we have always exported Made in Italy quality worldwide.
It therefore made sense for us to present ourselves as ambassadors of a unique, innovative business model, an expression of Italian excellence, which we personally, like Way2Global, proudly represent.
This resulted in the Made in B-Italy book.”
Laura Gori, Founder & CEO of Way2Global
“Made in B-Italy” is the book of benefit corporations, the result of two years of work and a successful partnership that illustrates the new Italian way of doing business, a model that aims to go beyond profit in order to have a positive impact on the environment and society, changing the fate of the planet.
Introduced by a preface by the Hon. Mauro Del Barba and by a theoretical introduction by Prof. Stefano Zamagni, an economist who is world renowned for his studies on civil economy, the testimony of three Italian benefit corporations – Way2Global, Treedom and Nativa – is intended to illustrate the necessity, urgency and validity of this beneficial new undertaking that transforms business into a community service.
To emphasize that business and sustainability are now two inseparable categories, we decided to officially announce the editorial goal of the “Made in B-Italy” project in a symbolic location for our country’s economy: the headquarters of the Italian Stock Exchange in Piazza Affari.
During the book launch, Lele Rozza, Director of AssoBenefit and editor of the publishing project, together with Laura Gori, Founder and CEO of Way2Global, and Anna Cogo, Unit Benefit Officer at Nativa, spoke enthusiastically about the meaning of this publishing project and the honour of acting as global standard bearers of this pioneering model.
“Nowadays, it is a challenge to do business. Doing it while trying to have a positive impact on society and the environment is an even greater, but fascinating challenge that cannot be overlooked by our civic conscience.
If pioneering candidates and courageous leaders are needed to take the first step, we are ready.
We would like to pave the way for the rest of the world.”
Laura Gori, Founder & CEO of Way2Global Srl SB
“We are conscious that the economic model which we have adopted so far has generated wealth,
but also many problems.
This model will certainly not lead us to a desirable future.
This is a time of emergency: companies must change and take responsibility.
There is considerable expertise in Italy: The average Italian entrepreneur considers these issues to be very important.
We therefore have the opportunity and the responsibility to become a positive example.
Before the law on benefit corporations, it was not legal for companies to have any other purpose than profit. Now the opposite is almost illegal and we are delighted about it!
We are on the right track and we need an increasing number of companies to follow suit!”
Anna Cogo, Unit Benefit Officer at Nativa
This is exactly why “Made in B-Italy” does not intend to stop here. In keeping with Way2Global’s commitment to inclusive globalism, as well as its international vocation, the company aims to go beyond national borders with a road-show whose final destination is EXPO 2020 Dubai, devoted to the shared theme of sustainability.
If, as Marco Ercolani put it, “The book’s real creator is the person who reads it and doesn't let it die”, our ambition is that “Made in B-Italy” can exist in the daily actions of entrepreneurs from all over the world, who decide to join us on the path to a better future for everyone.