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CEO Andrew Morlet will leave The Ellen MacArthur Foundation in 2025

2:26 min Management
Cowes, United Kingdom

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation was launched in 2010 with a small team based on the Isle of Wight working to promote an idea that was, at that time, virtually unknown. The Foundation set itself a mission of accelerating the transition from a linear take-make-waste model to a circular economy that eliminates waste and pollution, circulates products and materials, and regenerates nature, all by design.

Today, the Foundation employs more than 200 people, with offices in Brazil, Brussels, China, and the US, and works with its world-leading Network of businesses, policymakers, and financial institutions to mainstream the idea and ultimately transform the global economy.

Much of the Foundation’s work has been led by Andrew Morlet, who joined in January 2013 to establish the organisation’s business Network, and became the Foundation’s second CEO in 2014. 

Subsequently, the growth, influence, and impact of the circular economy idea globally is now undeniable. A few of the Foundation’s major contributions include:

  • Through collaboration with world leading institutions, analysts, academics and business leaders, the Foundation has produced and published more than 35 major reports, numerous short papers, and several books, as well as thousands of hours of educational and informative content that has reached tens of millions of people, and is currently watched by millions of people every month across multiple channels. The Foundation’s work and the idea of a circular economy is currently referenced in tens of thousands of media articles produced every year.

  • The Foundation has worked with the European Commission, White House, many global institutions, and national and city governments around the world to inform and influence policies supporting the circular economy.

  • The Foundation’s work in plastics and plastics packaging has played a significant role in catalysing global focus on this topic. Following our 2016 New Plastics Economy publication, the Foundation and the United Nations Environment Programme launched the Global Commitment in 2018, mobilising more than 1,000 organisations — including more than 250 businesses representing 20% of plastic packaging produced globally — behind a common vision and aligned 2025 targets, underpinned by common metrics and definitions. Over the last five years, Global Commitment signatories have substantially outperformed their peers in tackling plastic waste, avoiding nearly three million tonnes of virgin plastics production per year compared to business as usual. Signatories have more than doubled their share of recycled content and, as a result, are avoiding more than two million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year, effectively keeping one barrel of oil in the ground every two seconds.

  • Over the past ten years, the Foundation has raised more than £150m in project funding and has played a significant role in mobilising well over £350b in named circular economy public and private sector investment funding.

Andrew has announced that the time is right for him to step down as CEO in March 2025, as the organisation moves to a new era, driving towards its 2030 vision and targets. 

“Andrew is the most extraordinary strategist that I have ever had the privilege to work alongside, and I feel hugely honoured to have spent the last decade in his company. Under his guidance and leadership, the momentum we have seen build globally around the idea of a circular economy has surpassed even my wildest expectations. He has never been afraid to go into uncharted territory, which absolutely epitomises our spirit and what we stand for at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. His courage and conviction has led us to take on some outrageously challenging projects, such as our work on plastic packaging, which turned what seemed to be an impossible task of influencing a global system into a game-changing world-first demonstrator of how to create true systemic change. Pioneering moments such as these have come about as a direct result of Andrew’s instinct to pursue such critically relevant topics. Equally, their success has been driven by his unfaltering leadership and determination to find the most leveraged and impactful route to deliver circular success.”- Ellen MacArthur, Founder and Chair of Trustees, Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

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