One of the world’s top 100 licensors, with over 420 licensee and retail partners globally bringing products to life across 14 categories, Smiley is one of the world’s most easily recognisable brands. Now, as it approaches its 50-year anniversary, the company is looking to the future, putting sustainability at the forefront of its business to reinforce its mission of fostering positivity, creativity and optimism for a better world.
With the fashion industry responsible for 10 per cent of annual global carbon emissions, change is clearly needed. People are more concerned than ever about the wellbeing of the planet; Google trends show that ‘sustainability’ as a search term increased by 20 per cent in 2021, while according to research, 90 per cent of Gen Z consumers believe companies must act to help solve social and environmental issues.
Smiley has responded with a new programme, Future Positive, set to commence in 2023, that will support retailers, brands and consumer product industries to develop innovative solutions to transition to a positive future.
The Future Positive campaign will endeavour to spearhead change in the licensing industry by bringing together the most forward-thinking brands to curate a range of limited-edition sustainable lifestyle products, infused with Smiley’s brand experience and charitable giving opportunities.
By collaborating with partners and highlighting products with sustainability at their core, Smiley hopes to pave the way in the industry for other licensors to do the same. Future Positive packaging, POS and brand assets will be made from sustainable sources and a percentage of the profits will be reinvested in ‘for the planet’ initiatives.
Smiley’s five-year plan involves increasing the number of sustainable Smiley products with Future Positive branding to 25 per cent, and aiming at 100 sustainably committed lifestyle brands across collaborations and licensing deals.
The Future Positive campaign will build on the structure and processes that Smiley has already put in place to launch its 50th anniversary project in 16 countries all over the world, covering 92 department stores and retail chains and 66 global brands.
“We can see a real market demand for sustainable products because society is changing, thanks to new generations of consumers. There are a lot of initiatives everywhere, from brands, traders and retailers, and I think our simple logo and simple message can help federate a lot of these for the benefit of the Earth and its people.
Nicolas Loufrani, CEO, The Smiley Company
Smiley’s non-profit Smiley Movement will be a part of the overarching business planning by supporting change-makers protecting the planet. By connecting Smiley’s brand partners to its network of charities and social enterprises, Smiley Movement adds purpose to Smiley partnerships, creating meaningful engagements with consumers and building a social legacy. Smiley Movement will actively promote the Future Positive campaign through its platforms: Smiley News, Smiley Talks and its podcast Defiant Optimism.