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Safia Minney        

Founder of People Tree, Developer of the First Organic and Fair Trade Clothing Supply Chain; Recognized as "Outstanding Social Entrepreneur" by World Economic Forum

An award winning, international social entrepreneur, speaker and advisor, Safia Minney has 20 years+ experience as a Global CEO of the company she founded, People Tree, developing the first sustainable and Fair Trade supply chains and standards with advisory roles with industry bodies. Minney is seen as a thought leader in sustainable fashion and influencer in Sustainability and Modern Slavery. Extensive experience in Japan, Asia and Europe. Speaks Japanese and has authored many books and documentaries and films on Fair Trade and sustainability in English and Japanese. Minney received an MBE for services to Fair Trade and Fashion industries.

Deep understanding of Fashion Retail:- planning, operational and innovation for sustainability to increase social impact and decrease environmental impact. Understanding of risk, critical path, sourcing, merchandising, marketing strategy and finance. Experience leading international, multi-stakeholder teams to deliver change and innovation.

Minney has an extensive international network in Sustainability and the Creative industries and is recognised by the World Economic Forum as an outstanding Social Entrepreneur. Minney combines purpose, commercial, digital communications to support companies’ sustainability transformation. With her experience in advertising and communications and social enterprise, Minney has a rare ability to translate better business practice through environmental, social and governance into stakeholder engagement and through internal and external communications to deliver cutting edge action for sustainability and brand loyalty.

Minney founded Global Village and People Tree in Tokyo, Japan. in 1991. In 1995, she started design and product development of Fair Trade and sustainable clothing, food and gift product ranges for the Japanese market and set up retail, wholesale and later Ecommerce. She developed a process of capacity building for Fair Trade and social enterprises in Asia, Africa and Latin America and started the “Market Exposure Program’. We pioneered the ‘Sustainable Fair Trade Management System’ for the World Fair Trade Organisation and were the first company to achieve Fair Trade certification label for our operations internationally. In 2010, she launched People Tree Europe in London.

Today Minney coaches senior leaders in sustainability, founders and senior management teams over the last three years and is certified to ILM7 in Executive Coaching and Mentoring. She consults on sustainable business, supply chains and marketing, clients include fashion companies, and pioneer brands in sustainability ranging from beauty to construction. International speaking engagements for key notes on Sustainability, Modern Slavery, and motivational Leadership and panel discussions at industry events. She founded REAL Sustainability, a CIC to promote sustainable living and leading and heads the not-for-profit with a team of friends. Minney is an Advisor with Business Declares a Climate & Ecological Emergency.

She is the author of many books in English and Japanese.

Speech Topics


Partnering, innovating and capacity building with suppliers to create social impact and environmental best practice. How to communicate to your customers and stakeholders to build sales and brand loyalty and set the agenda in your sector.


Building an operational design and buying plan to incorporate social and environmental best practice into conventional business models, products, services and marketing communications. What are the key environmental issues and how to avoid them.


With the Modern Slavery Act companies with a turnover of £36million or more are obliged to report on what they are doing to eradicate slavery from their supply chains. We will use our expertise in Fair Trade, meeting environmental standards and better business practice to help drive operational change within your company. Our expertise lies in agricultural product, textile and crafts with production in Asia, Africa and Latin America


Communicating best practice to customers and stakeholders to promote engagement and new environmental and social initiatives. How to create initiatives to deliver and show commitment to social value with examples of successful initiatives in Europe, Japan and Asia.


Safia draws on her own experience pioneering social business and brand in Japan and Europe whilst juggling a family. Overcoming challenges through partnerships and collaborations and bringing leadership and income opportunities to women around the world to create social change.


A look at the global ‘ethical consumer’ movement, the rise of the eco lifestyle store, social enterprise and sustainable design and campaigning for social change.

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