Nike: double profits thanks to circular economy

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The multinational starts a partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. The priorities: sustainable materials and recycling.

It just published its latest sustainability report, announcing a new global partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. We are talking about Nike, a brand that for decades has been the symbol of the most uncontrollable capitalism and yet now admits that in order to maintain its growth levels it has to innovate itself and join the circular economy, through a low environmental impact strategy and a closed circuit future.

“We’ve set a moonshot challenge to double our business with half the impact – said Hannah Jones, Nike’s Chief Sustainability Officer – It’s a challenge we are setting for ourselves, our collaborators and our partners as we move toward a circular economy future.”

The company made significant efforts to reduce its waste and emissions, but this year marks a shift in its sustainability strategy: now the focus is on finding new ways to create products from waste materials.

Nike cut down on the number of working factories to strengthen its control on the production process and improve the production chain’s standards for what concerns work conditions and environmental impact.

Moreover, the multinational has set ambitious goals for the fiscal year 2020:

  • Waste: Zero waste from contracted footwear manufacturing sent to landfill or incineration without energy recovery.
  • Sourcing: Have 100 percent of contract factories meet the company’s definition of sustainable.
  • Products: Deliver maximum performance with minimum impact, through a 10 percent reduction in the average environmental footprint of products and increased use of more sustainable materials overall.
  • Renewable energy: By the end of fiscal year 2025, reach 100 percent renewable energy in owned or operated facilities and to encourage broader adoption of renewable energy as part of an effort to control absolute emissions.
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