The Watch and Jewellery initiative 2030 (WJI2030), a sustainable collaboration founded by Cartier, Richemont and Kering in October 2021, has appointed Iris Van der Veken as executive director and secretary general.
Van der Veken has more than twenty years of experience in the jewellery, fashion and technology industries and was the former executive director of the Responsible Jewellery Council, where she led its Generation Equality Campaign. She is also a board member of ISEAL and Diamonds Do Good.
“This appointment marks an exciting new chapter for the Watch & Jewellery Initiative 2030 and we are looking forward to working with Iris and her team that she will build to ensure we will deliver on our ambition,” said Kering’s chief of sustainability and institutional affairs officer, Marie-Claire Daveu in a statement. “Her track record on strategic partnerships, depth of international sustainability experience in jewellery and fashion supply chains and her passion for building collective impact through the 17 Sustainable Goals makes her a strong leader.”
WJI2030 is being driven by the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to create sustainable global jewellery and watch industry, which the founding members Cartier, Richemont and Kering believe can only be achieved through collaborative efforts. Since the launch in October, the initiative has also signed up Chanel, Pandora, Swarovski, Montblanc and Rosy Blue.
The WJI2030 is also focusing on science-based climate targets, biodiversity protection and materials and business model innovation, with the intent of encouraging and enabling industry transformation and innovation.
Van der Veken will report directly to the board of the Watch and Jewellery Initiative 2030 and will be based in Geneva, with the organisation stating “a team will soon be set up” to support her in the new role.
Cyrille Vigneron, president and chief executive of Cartier International, added: "We are confident that under Iris’ leadership, we will be able to accelerate change and enable action throughout the global jewellery and watch supply chain. Her deep commitment and highly valuable experience are crucial to achieve the initiative’s ambitious goals and make a transformative difference for the future generations.”