Across the globe, stores and restaurants are closing and people are living in isolation. Life feels less like reality and more like a simulation a little bit every day.
But while times are gloom and the future is uncertain, it’s great to see the world banding together. Bright moments are happening across the globe. In Toronto, we’ve seen local institutions pivot their businesses to provide people with hand sanitizer and grocery stores putting those most at-risk first. And across the beauty, fashion, and retail industries, we’re seeing conglomerates step up their efforts to help stop the spread of Coronavirus, too.
Here is how 10 major brands and retailers are doing their part during the COVID-19 outbreak:
Luxury conglomerate LVMH was the first on the fashion and beauty front to offer up its support in helping to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. On March 15, the company announced that it would turn its perfumes and cosmetics business into a hand sanitizer manufacturer. LVMH has committed to deliver the hand sanitizer it creates free of charge to French health authorities for “as long as necessary” to help “enable a greater number of people to continue to take the right action to protect themselves from the spread of the virus.”
Under the L’Oréal beauty brand, La Roche-Posay said it would provide hand sanitizer to institutions in Europe that need it the most such as main partnering pharmacies, hospitals, and nursing homes. Garnier, also under the L’Oréal beauty brand, will distribute hand sanitizer to its European clients’ food distribution channels. In a statement to WWD, L’Oréal Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jean-Paul Agon said, “Through these gestures, L’Oréal wishes to express its appreciation, support and solidarity with all those who mobilize with extraordinary courage and abnegation to fight against this pandemic.”
Another of the retailers donating to COVID-19 prevention efforts is Los Angeles Apparel. In a statement made through Instagram, the company’s controversial owner Dov Charney (formerly of American Apparel) offered help to the municipal, state, and federal agencies. “Our experienced workforce and management team of over 450 people are ready and able to produce masks or medical products for any government agency,” Charney said.
Fast fashion behemoth Inditex — the owner of Zara, Massimo Dutti, and more — is also lending its workforce in the battle to prevent COVID-19’s spread. As one of the retailers donating to COVID-19 prevention efforts, the company’s factories and logistics teams will help the Spanish government by donating masks for patients and medical workers, stating to Vogue, that it “will make a delivery at least once a week of materials we purchase directly.” As of now, the company has donated 10,000 protective face masks and expects to have 300,000 surgical masks ready by March 21.
In a statement on Instagram, Moncler’s Chairman and CEO Remo Ruffini announced that the company would donate €10 million towards the construction of a hospital in Milan with 400 extensive care units. He said, “Milan is a city that has given us all an extraordinary time. We cannot and must not abandon it. It is everyone’s duty to give back to the city that has given us so much.”
Earlier in the month, Giorgio Armani donated €1.25 million to a number of Italian hospitals and institutions. According to WWD, “The Luigi Sacco and San Raffaele hospitals and the Istituto dei Tumori in Milan as well as the Istituto Lazzaro Spallanzani in Rome will benefit from the donation. The amount will additionally support the activities of Protezione Civile, the country’s civil defense.”
As reported by South China Morning Post, Kering — the luxury conglomerate that owns Gucci, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, and more — has donated 7.5 million yuan to the Red Cross Society Of China.
Versace’s Chief Creative Office Donatella Versace and her daughter Allegra Versace Beck have donated €200,000 to the San Raffaele hospital in Milan. In a statement, Versace said, “Our hearts go out to all those who have been affected by this disease and to all the doctors and medical staff who have been working heroically non-stop in the past weeks in the effort to take care of our loved ones.” The company has also donated 1 million yuan to The Chinese Red Cross Foundation.
According to Business Insider, Prada co-CEOs Muiccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli, as well as Chairman Carlo Mazzi, have donated two resuscitation and complete intensive care units to hospitals in Milan.
One of the big retailers donating to COVID-19 prevention efforts is Walmart. On March 17, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation announced a pledge of $25 million to help organizations on the front lines in fighting COVID-19. The large sum will be split between food banks and meal programs in America, as well as global efforts in preventing, identifying, and managing the outbreak.
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