In 2000–before GE got hip to EcoMagination, before Wal-Mart embraced sustainability, long before today’s green business frenzy–a medium-sized company called Shaklee decided to go “climate neutral.” I learned a little about this unusual, 51-year-old companyÂ earlier this week when I had lunch with its CEO, Roger Barnett. Shaklee is the subject of today’s CNNMoney column.
Barnett’s a man on a mission, arguing that his company can combine making money with making the world a better place. Like Avon or Tupperware, Shaklee relies on independent distributors, and not retail stores, to sell its stuff. Barnett says this model means the company is in the business of creating health (by selling its products, which are good for consumers and for the earth) and wealth (as its distributors make money). He’s looking to market Shaklee better and to expand into global markets. Revenues today are a bit under $500 million, he told me.
Here’s how the column begins:
Probably not Shaklee, a direct seller of natural nutrition and personal care products and environmentally friendly household cleaners. But Shaklee was a green business pioneer before any of those companies were started.
You can read the rest here.