Cheshire explains sustainability at Start summit

Published:  24 September, 2010

LONDON: Business planning a long-term future cannot ignore sustainability issues said Ian Cheshire, group chief executive officer of Kingfisher speaking at the Start summit on sustainability held last week.

Mr Cheshire, who is also chair of the Start advisory board said: "If you're running a business on a five- to 10-year timeframe, you can't simply have an unsustainable business model. Unless we're sustainable, we don't have a long term future."


Leaders are critical to the success or failure of an organisation becoming more sustainable, he said: "Organisations really do really look to see if the leadership is serious about it before they commit, but I don't think the CEO and their immediate reports is enough," he said.

"B&Q is 40 years old. I'd like to see B&Q around in another 40 years. We simply can't afford to have unsustainable business models. And the businesses that don't understand that sustainability will affect the general economy and the general consumers won't adapt well to it, won't prosper, so I actually think it's the key to the next level of corporate evolution." Mr Cheshire said.

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