From left to right: Joanna Yarrow and Tom Firth, co-founders of M&C Saatchi Life
Today M&C Saatchi announces the launch of LIFE, a global consultancy that combines a proven track record in sustainability with data-driven communications planning and creativity. The purpose of LIFE is to help brands and businesses inspire and enable people to live healthier and more sustainable lives, and in doing so build value.
LIFE will be led by IKEA’s former global head of sustainable and healthy living, Joanna Yarrow, and MD of M&C Saatchi London, Tom Firth. It will work with businesses that are beginning to look beyond just supply chain and operational improvements to consider the role their products, services and brands can play in helping people live better lives within the planet’s limits – and how this can build trust and drive sustainable growth. Clients include The Mayor of London, De’Longhi Group (Kenwood) and a large American consumer corporate soon to be announced.
Joanna joins M&C Saatchi from IKEA where she was global head of sustainable and healthy living. As an internationally recognised sustainability figurehead, Joanna brings 25 years’ cross-sectoral experience in strategic leadership, organisational change, engagement, and innovation. Alongside her role at LIFE, she sits on P&G’s Global Sustainability Advisory Board.
Tom has been with M&C Saatchi for 21 years, most recently as managing director of M&C Saatchi London where he was responsible for leading many of their most prominent behaviour change and social impact campaigns with both commercial and public sector clients.
Joanna and Tom are supported by strategic advisors including Sue Garrard, one of the chief architects of Unilever’s Sustainable Living Brands Strategy and a leader in the field, and Hilary Berg, formerly head of sustainability and social responsibility at Iceland Foods, famous for their sector defining palm oil and plastic campaigns. LIFE’s work will be powered by sustainability insights through a partnership with GlobeScan, the leading global sustainability research and insight business.
Moray MacLennan, CEO of M&C Saatchi, comments: “Our strategy is to deliver meaningful change. There is nothing more meaningful than creating a positive impact for the societies we live in and the environment we rely on, which is why we’ve established LIFE, which will sit at the heart of the Group. Our experts have been instrumental in accelerating the sustainability journey for some of the world’s leading brands, which combined with the capabilities of M&C Saatchi Group means that LIFE can offer clients unparalleled support in mainstreaming sustainable living.”
Joanna Yarrow, CSO and co-founder of M&C Saatchi LIFE, comments: “The scale and pace of change needed to avoid ecological catastrophe means sustainable living has to become mainstream, now. People worldwide want to be part of the solution, but they don’t see ways to have positive impact in their everyday lives. Meanwhile whilst many businesses and other organisations are focusing on their supply chains and operations, few are clear on the most meaningful role they can play to help their customers live more sustainably. And importantly, how to do so in ways that are distinctive, competitive, and compelling. M&C Saatchi LIFE sets out to address these needs.”
Tom Firth, CEO and co-founder of M&C Saatchi LIFE: “Sustainability needs specialist expertise in understanding the nuances and technical issues, of course, but it also needs creativity. Leaps of imagination to help find lateral solutions to the problems we’re dealing with as businesses and as a society, as well as creative ideas and stories that make sustainable living aspirational and desirable. That’s what we’re doing with LIFE - bringing sustainability and creativity together to put brands at the heart of the transition to a more sustainable and equitable way of life. No one else is offering that combination right now.”