King shares insights about the company’s new ESG strategy and commitments and what the future of ESG looks like for Bath & Body Works.
Submitted by Bath & Body Works
This is an exciting time for Bath & Body Works with the release of its first ESG report. What excites you the most about being at the company and helping to lead its ESG journey?
It’s great to be back in my home state of Ohio, and I’m excited to join Bath & Body Works on its ESG journey. I come to work every day inspired by my smart, passionate colleagues who are committed to doing the right thing, and that positive energy has been fueling so much of the ESG progress to date.
Since I joined Bath & Body Works in December 2021, we’ve been learning, growing and connecting across the organization and framing ESG as a collective effort in which everyone’s role is important to our success. What excites me is that while formalizing ESG within the company is new, sustainability work has been taking place for years. It’s now a matter of organizing our priorities, refining and building the programs needed to support the work and taking our internal and external stakeholders along for the ride. What also excites me is the incredible support from our Executive Council and Board of Directors who understand the value ESG brings to the business.
In thinking about the company’s ESG strategy/commitments, how did you prioritize the work? Is there an area that you are especially passionate about moving forward?
In order to create the most meaningful and impactful ESG strategy, it first needs focus. So, we started this work by conducting a prioritization assessment to better understand the interests and needs of our internal partners and external stakeholders, including investors, topical experts and, of course, our customers. As a result, we created our ESG strategy focused on six priority areas, each supported by near- and longer-term commitments.
When I look at our ESG strategy and commitments, I believe each of these topics link up nicely with one another, and we will quickly find that work against one goal supports progress in multiple areas. It may sound cliché, but it’s impossible for me to pick an area where I’m more passionate about driving forward than another because I see all of these working hand-in-hand to move the company toward a more responsible and resilient future. Take, for example, our work around the sustainable sourcing of our ingredients. When we progress along that journey, it can also help deliver enhanced product transparency, as well as help with improving our social and environmental impacts — all of which can deliver more sustainable products that we know our customers want.
What does success look like for ESG at Bath & Body Works in the coming years?
When I think of the year ahead, I think of one word — progress. We’ve set meaningful goals that will require significant collaboration, investment, thoughtful planning and solid execution to ensure success. For example, we’ve set goals around climate change and carbon emissions, which are to reduce our Scope 1 and 2 emissions 50% by 2030. To accomplish this, we’re actively looking at how to leverage renewable energy as one of the means to deliver against that goal. At the same time, we are conducting a baseline assessment of our Scope 3 emissions, which will take time. This will span across our entire value chain — from sourcing our ingredients all the way to the end of product life. Once we collect that information, we’ll be looking to set an ambitious goal for the entire value chain in 2025, aligned to the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi), to ultimately move toward climate neutrality. It is said, ‘little by little, one travels far.’ I’m confident that we will make steady progress and by next year we will have additional data and outcomes of the work that demonstrates the progress we’re making step-by-step and day-by-day as we take care of the things that matter most.
Home of America’s Favorite Fragrances®, Bath & Body Works is a global leader in personal care and home fragrance, including the top-selling collections for fine fragrance mist, body lotion and body cream, 3-wick candles, home fragrance diffusers and liquid hand soap. Powered by agility and innovation, the company’s predominantly U.S.-based supply chain enables the company to deliver quality, on-trend luxuries at affordable prices. Bath & Body Works serves and delights customers however and wherever they want to shop, from welcoming, in-store experiences at more than 1,800 company-operated Bath & Body Works locations in the U.S. and Canada and more than 425 international franchised locations to an online storefront at www.BathandBodyWorks.com.
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