B Lab EU: Hi! Please tell us briefly who you are and what your company does. Alaya: Hi! My name is Olivier Eyries. I am a co-founder of Alaya and a young Forbes under-30. We're aiming to build a sustainable bridge between corporations and non-profit organisations in order to do good! Simply put, Alaya’s innovative solution drives corporate giving and employee volunteering, empowering people and organisations to change the world, one act at a time.
B Lab EU: Why did you decide to become a B Corp? Alaya: Alaya is by nature a B corp, meaning a company looking to have a positive impact on society. We decided to become a B Corp when we founded the company, making us the youngest in the B Corp network in 2018.
I remember one of our earliest mentors was Jonathan Normand, head of the B Corp movement in Switzerland. He showed us the value of the B Corp network, the values shared by its members and the desire that links every company within the network to help each other in order to do good. .
B Lab EU: What does being a B Corp mean to you? Alaya: Alaya started as a non-profit but, as entrepreneurs, we needed investors so we also became a company. We struggled a lot to make investors understand that a company can be both impactful and profitable. For me, being a B Corp is proof that we can do business in a sustainable way. From our employees, to our customers, partners, investors, even competitors, we make sure to show that we can be respectful, impactful and profitable at the same time. That we can do business in the 21st century and have a positive impact on people and on our planet.
B Lab EU: Have you seen business benefits of being a B Corp? Alaya: More and more, yes. As an example: our clients are required to work with suppliers that can prove their values not only through ideas but also through facts. In Switzerland, there is no particular status for being a social start up so being a B Corp offers us a chance to answer them, based on facts.
B Lab EU: What are you looking forward to most about the 2019 Summit? Alaya: I am looking to meet inspiring people that share common values, to learn about new businesses and to discover how to improve the way we do business. As a B Corp I am also looking forward to getting to know how companies overcome the challenge of engaging their colleagues in doing good and also to see if Alaya could help them - because this is where our expertise lies.
B Lab EU: What are your plans for the future to use your business as a force for good? Alaya: As we say in the team, every new company, employee, or NGO joining Alaya represents more volunteers, more donations and more connections made between the corporate and caritative world and therefore more opportunities to have an impact and do good. With growth alongside increased impact, I'll let you guess what our goal is for the years to come!
B Lab EU: Thank you and look forward to seeing you at the Summit!