Giving back more than £78,000 in Fairtrade premiums to support miners.
Alan Frampton is undoubtedly a force for good in the universe. A no-nonsense globe-trotting outdoorsman with a head for business and a serious expertise in supply chain logistics, he is as comfortable in a Peruvian mining village as he is jumping out of a plane with his one of his equally daredevil three kids.
He made the 2013 Hot 100 on the back of two years at Cred in which time he has reduced Fairtrade prices, helped the company to launch the world’s first Fairtrade silver and give more than £78,000 in Fairtrade premiums to support its mining community. This money has had a real effect in the shape of sewage improvements, better water provision, computers in schools and, soon, electricity.
“We are in this to see the miners get better lives,” he says, and while he is sincerely happy to hear that other companies are improving their Fairtrade credentials, they don’t always stand up to his scrutiny.“They get nervous when they see me coming at trade fairs. Often when I ask them what they’ve really done it turns out to be no more than a £600 cheque.”
Alan, who is also the chairman of African dental charity Bridge2Aid, and has subsequently made 60 trips to Africa in recent years, brings a real professionalism to Cred, which can boast a 50% uplift in total sales. Last year it sold more than 500 wedding rings, a huge step forward for the company. To Alan, Fairtrade is simply the future; the market, he says, is worth billions and the UK is one of, if not the, biggest supporter. Moreover, the customer profile is educated, young and swelling.
Before Cred, Alan was in the large-scale floristry world, supplying to M&S, Waitrose and Sainsbury’s. As well as building a 10-football-pitch-sized £5 million greenhouse, the job saw him travel regularly to Spain, the Canaries and South America on buying trips.
So as well as learning Spanish, he gleaned a thorough respect for the supply chains in the UK’s supermarkets. “Every supermarket you went into could tell you exactly where their product was from. You try the same in a jewellers. Jewellers are brilliant designers, brilliant retailers and brilliant at customer service but they just don’t have the same grip on the supply chain.”
Cred does. This year it has beaten off competition from across the UK to scoop both the Supply Chain award at the Guardian Sustainable Business Awards, ahead of the likes of M&S and Nestlé, as well as the People and Environment Business award, where it beat famously ethical clothing retailer Patagonia. Impressive.
Alan Frampton was selected as a Bering Trailblazer in the Professional Jeweller Hot 100 2013 in association with the Company of Master Jewellers. To read a digital version of the Hot 100 book online, click here.