Meet Diana. Co-Founder of Positive Luxury. Inspired by a story, which Sir David Attenborough shared about the Large British Blue Butterfly, entrepreneurs Diana Verde Nieto and Karen Hanton MBE, set out on a joint mission to close the trust gap between people and brands.
Inspiring consumers to buy better and influencing brands to do better, the business was founded in 2011 and has grown to house over 120 brands all proudly displaying the Butterfly Mark.
Positive Luxury award the mark to luxury brands that are committed to sustainability and helping consumers shop with confidence. The Butterfly Mark is an interactive trust stamp that identifies the brands in the Positive Luxury community of #brandstotrust. It offers brand transparency at the point-of-sale in a consumer-friendly way.
We caught up with Diana to learn more about Positive Luxury, the values and why we should all be on the lookout for more the small White Butterfly…
Why is it different?
Positive Luxury is a guide to positive living. It’s different because we aim to equip our community with the inspiration and information they need to make better buying choices.
Unlike other sustainability assessments, Positive Luxury aims to break down complex information about a brand’s sustainability into consumer-friendly language and ideas.
The core of this mission is our Butterfly Mark – a unique interactive trust mark that identifies the brands in our community of #brandstotrust. When you see the Butterfly Mark at a point-of-sale on either a brand or retailer’s website, simply click or tap to discover the brand’s environmental and social efforts and achievements, as verified by Positive Luxury.
Why did you start it?
I set up Positive Luxury with my co-founder Karen Hanton MBE as we wanted to narrow the trust-gap between brands and consumers.
Consumers increasingly want to know that the companies they buy from are doing good and share their values, but they don’t always know how or where to find the information they need to do this. The Butterfly Mark helps them identify these brands, allowing people to shop with confidence.
What is your purpose as a company?
Our mission is to inspire people to buy better and influence brands to do better.
Do you think your purpose has changed much since you first launched?
No, my aim has always been to make sustainability more consumer-friendly and open to a wider range of people, by making the language easier and the information more accessible.
What are your 3 biggest pieces of advice as founders to others wanting to set up a conscious / purpose led business?
Purpose and values are the things you do when no-one is watching. So what you need to do is keep to your principles and your mission, and that will guide your business and help you achieve your goals.
What are your plans for the next 18 months?
Over the next 18 months we aim to affirm our status as the globally recognised trust mark for the luxury lifestyle industry. We plan to expand our business internationally and launch further retail partnerships to follow our exciting launch with Selfridges earlier this year.
Of course, we’ll also be welcoming more brands that are committed to sustainability to our community by awarding them the Butterfly Mark.
What’s the most interesting story or discovery you’ve made from all the brands you’ve come across?
Every discovery is unique. Most brands have untold stories that we like to uncover and they are all good in their own right.
What do not a lot of people realise about the industry you’re in, but they really should? (any shocking facts or stats?)
That taking an established or global brand and embedding sustainability into the corporate strategy and business practices is not easy and will not happen overnight. It is a long process with many steps and takes change management throughout. Sustainability is a journey, not a destination.
What other businesses do you look up to / draw inspiration from?
There are too many to list! I am very blessed to be part of the Young Global Leaders as part of the World Economic Forum and I come across and meet incredible men and women, who are not only successful entrepreneurs, but are inspirational in how they live their lives.
What is the single biggest issue that the world needs to address and why?
Education – with education and knowledge comes awareness and empathy and you can solve more problems in the world.
What is your life’s purpose?
I aim to build a legacy business that puts a stop on talking about sustainability and makes it something that is part of everyday life.
What did life teach you yesterday?
To be grateful. Even if my day is rubbish, that’s something that I learn more about every day, because even if it’s been a bad day, you can still learn something from it.
What material possession brings you the most joy?
There are not many material possessions that bring me prolonged joy. Instead it’s my friends, family and Godchildren. And being outside, ideally doing sports. These are the things that bring me most joy in my life.
What is so great about the world anyway?
I believe this time is the most exciting time in history, because we can rewrite the future by examining the past.
It’s the most peaceful time in history for a start, although it sometimes may not feel like it, and technology unlocks new potential every day to create a better future. We will soon be in a time when the whole of the world will be connected – just imagine what we can achieve through this.
Of course, with great power comes great responsibility…