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Kearney and FFWD Announce Strategic Partnership With Circular Valley® to Accelerate Innovation Towards a Fully Circular Economy


Global consultancy partnership, Kearney, together with its dedicated business model innovation arm, FFWD, has today announced an ongoing strategic partnership with Circular Valley to fast-track innovative circular solutions and support organizations across the globe to rethink current business models in response to increasing demand from their stakeholder communities to reduce, reuse and recycle.

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Marc Lakner, Andreas Mucke, Judith Alt Röckemann and Michael Roemer (Photo: Business Wire)

The partnership builds on an existing relationship which dates back to the founding of the Circular Valley® back in 2020. It includes the development of market insights on circularity, supporting Circular Valley accelerator cohort companies to develop innovative circular solutions, and initiate pilots to test and validate ideas with the world’s leading companies across industries. The partnership will also look to shape circular insights that address the biggest issues faced by organizations when trying to translate their ambition into tangible outcomes that support people, process and planet.

Andreas Mucke, Managing Director, Circular Valley stated that, "Kearney, as a world-renowned consulting company is an ideal partner for us as Circular Valley® thanks to its profound expertise in the field of sustainability and circular economy. And with global access to both large and medium-sized companies, this is a great opportunity for us to work together and actively introduce circular economy and sustainability to a greater sphere of industry leaders than before. There is no lack of knowledge around this subject, but there is a lack of collective action and implementation. By bringing together more industrial influencers and innovators we have the ability to accelerate the shift required to drive change.”

The consolidation of this partnership comes at a time when the world is facing a rising resource scarcity and waste problem. And a growing global population only exacerbates the problem further. With 100 billion tons of waste and emissions per year worldwide, 50% of which is generated by the building industry alone, and the average person ingesting 5g of microplastics per week, the time to act is now.

Michael Roemer, Co-Founder of FFWD - Kearney’s business builder, said that, “By working in collaboration with Circular Valley’s public and private sector partners we aim to identify the pioneers creating the solutions for tomorrow’s circular economy to thrive, and work with them to validate and then rapidly scale their groundbreaking solutions. In parallel, we will work with industry leaders to rethink their business models, integrate circularity into their core, and partner up with the pioneering solutions that are emerging from this Circular Valley partnership. The objective for us is very clear. This is about reversing the negative trends we are witnessing across the globe by eliminating waste and emissions, and closing open material cycles, so that the value of products, materials and resources is maintained in the economy for as long as possible and the generation of waste minimized.”

While circular economy solutions are universally recognized as key to shaping sustainable and resilient businesses, aligning the strategic and operational ambitions with implementation and tangible outcomes remains a major challenge across all industries.

Marc Lakner, Managing Director for Kearney (DACH) commented that, “Building on Kearney’s heritage in transformation and strategic operations, our partnership with Circular Valley enables us to further support making our clients’ bold sustainability ambitions a reality, alongside driving business growth. We’re already working on more than 170 sustainability projects a year with leading organizations across diverse sectors and geographies to tackle their most pressing issues: from ESG transformation and achieving net zero to sustainable and responsible sourcing, circularity, and fostering inclusive and equitable societies. By partnering with Circular Valley, and its extended ecosystem of innovation leaders in this space, we continue to build on this commitment, and be a driving force for the change that is needed right now to build a more sustainable and circular future, together.

About Kearney: Kearney is a leading global management consulting firm with deep-rooted expertise in strategic transformation. We work with more than three-quarters of the Fortune Global 500, as well as with government bodies and non-profit organizations.

About FFWD: FFWD is Kearney’s dedicated business builder focused on helping organizations to drive growth through tech-enabled business model innovation.

About Circular Valley: Circular Valley® is the global hotspot for the circular economy. The non-profit Circular Valley® Foundation brings relevant stakeholders to the table. Across industries and technologies, companies, startups, science and politics jointly develop solutions for the transformation to the circular economy. Public relations, the world's first Circular Economy Accelerator and policy recommendations are the foundation's main areas of work.

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