Equity's James Mwangi among 14 CEOs committed to global growth

They have also worked on a White Paper focused on purpose driven businesses

In Summary
  • The CEOs are calling for an inclusive global economy
  • They represent a combined annual revenue of over $100 billion and a combined global workforce of over 500,000.
Equity Bank CEO James Mwangi
Equity Bank CEO James Mwangi
Image: FILE

Fourteen global chief executives among then Equity Bank Group's James Mwangi will champion cross–sector collaboration in the creation of a purpose-first economy.

The Purpose Economy describes the way in which work is changing to reflect the desire among employees to realise higher societal purpose in their work.

It suggests that companies will be most successful in the long-term only if they have a very clear sense of societal purpose, with which employees can closely identify. 


In a joint open letter, the CEOs are calling on businesses, governments and other development actors to join them in accelerating the transition towards an inclusive, resilient, sustainable economy that recognises and enables purpose-first businesses to thrive.

They outlined their vision for a new global economy that is more equal, inclusive and sustainable; an economy that is more resilient in the face of pandemics, climate change and many other global challenges that the world is facing.


The other 13 leaders include CEOs of Mastercard, Fortune Media, Mahindra, Interface, Voyager, Danone, DSM, Philips, L’Oréal, International Chamber of Commerce, Ketchum PR, Natura & Co. and Beiersdorf.

The CEOs’ open letter has been endorsed by the UN Secretary General António Guterres, UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore, and OECD Development Co-operation director Jorge Moreira da Silva.

The corporate leaders represent a combined annual revenue of over $100 billion and a combined global workforce of over 500,000.

“Rather than 'build it back', we are choosing to 'build it better',” states the joint signatories in the commitment letter.

 They have  called on global leaders to join them in supporting the growth of the purpose-first economy.


Prior to signing the commitment, the CEOs worked with experts from Harvard University, Unilever, The World Bank, and The London School of Economics on a White Paper focused on purpose driven businesses


The paper will be released at the third Annual Leaders on Purpose CEO Summit which will take place on the sidelines of the 2020 United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

The outcome document of the summit will be presented to world leaders at this year's November G20 Summit in Saudi Arabia, and to the leaders attending the Davos World Economic Forum gathering in 2021.

Mwangi said that the current state of the world economy, as evidenced by the inequality revealed by the Covid-19 pandemic, has left business leaders the choice to recognise that the world system only works for a few and not the majority of the world's population.

''This demonstrates that the economic and social system we have relied on is broken. We must, as a cohesive stakeholder community of leaders, address this inequality and serve humanity in a more productive and concerted way,’’ Mwangi said.