Cécile Coutens

The Role of Royal Canin Foundation Associates

By Cécile Coutens, CEO of Royal Canin

What is the role of Associates within the Royal Canin Foundation? We want our employees, which we refer to as Associates, to feel a sense of ownership concerning the Foundation. They lead our progress daily and are a fundamental part of our focus to be an even more mutual and purpose-led organization. Their role at the Foundation starts from the beginning. Every year, we encouraged them to get involved from the early stages by proposing a project and then voting for those that they believe should be supported by the Foundation. They are part of our decision-making and we are happy to see their involvement so far. Beyond that, I must remember that we have one thing in common as Associates: the passion for pets. Royal Canin enables us to channel this passion in the business - and now, through the Foundation, also in the role of pets in society. This makes us really proud! Practically speaking, how does a project is nominated and qualifies to receive support? In 2020, the first year of the Royal Canin Foundation, 44 projects were nominated for an award cycle. Ten projects were then selected through a mutual voting process, governed by the Royal Canin Ethics and Compliance policy and with input from the Royal Canin Foundation Board. We were happy to see this level of engagement and we are looking forward to the years to come. What are the results so far? All Royal Canin’s Associates around the world can nominate projects on an annual basis. We are over 8,000 Associates, operating in more than 100 markets. We know that great projects are being carried out in all these regions, and that’s why our Associates can suggest initiatives that fit within the organization’s purpose. After that, they are evaluated by the Royal Canin Foundation Board. We aim to have the power of collective intelligence contributing to this project.As CEO of Royal Canin, what is the legacy you want to leave through the Royal Canin Foundation? I have always admired the positive impact that pets can bring to our lives. Through an independent organization like the Royal Canin Foundation, we want more and more people to feel the powerful outcomes that cats and dogs can have on human health and welfare. Their role in society can and should be even more recognized, and I am honored to see this happening with the support of our more than 8,000 Associates globally.