© 2017 by Sustainable Means

Case Studies

Ultra High Net Worth Venture Philanthropist, Carbon Finance

Chief Operating Officer

We were commissioned by an UHNW family to find an outstanding leader to take their $10M venture philanthropy backed concept through build-out, launch and growth. Our client had a strong entrepreneurial history of creating highly successful ventures, including an international NGO dedicated to carbon reduction with Gold Standard ++ verified projects.

"More often than not hiring senior colleagues is a difficult and usually a much delayed process. In this case we avoided all the problems. In fact, it went almost too smoothly to believe. Thank you for your efforts.” 

The aim for this NGO was to achieve simple carbon action and awareness at the point of purchase for US consumers while providing significant carbon finance for some of the world's least developed countries.

Sustainable Means sourced 3 standout finalists within 6 weeks. These included:

i) A former Kleiner Perkins serial entrepreneur-in-residence who had grown major companies through to IPO, had Board-level social impact experience and a personal interest in our client's projects.

ii) A serial consumer start-up through exit / IPO operations leader with additional finance (Goldman Sachs), strategic corporate partnering and social impact credentials. This candidate had recently grown and successfully operated a start-up social impact NGO to the point of multiple steady revenue streams through impactful corporate partnerships, with partners like SAP. (This was the candidate chosen as the COO by our client).

iii) A major consumer brand leader co-responsible for one of the fastest new business unit growths within the LOHAS market of all time (new “green” unit from zero to $200M consumer sales within 1 year of launch, in part due to utilizing Walmart distribution channel /sustainable product appetite to full advantage), who also had a relevant “ethical consumer markets” growth track-record (Fairtrade NGO).

In addition to search services, Sustainable Means provided extensive client advisement before and during this search. We helped the client create a granular strategy to execute their overarching vision, so that they could secure the right combination of skills in their leader. The search successfully closed within 10 weeks and the new COO hit the ground running, launching the product at COP21 in Paris in a particularly visible slot after the Dalai Lama's speech. After 2 years, the organization is operating successfully to the business plan.