IND – The international distributor alliance, Ippag (International Partnership for Premiums and Gifts), staged its annual autumn meeting from October 14-18, 2019. As usual, the group followed the invitation of one of its members: Gifting Ideas from Mumbai/India was the host of this year’s meeting. The group accepts exclusively one member company per country, whereby according to own accounts, not the biggest, but rather the best company in the respective country is granted membership.
The agenda put together by Florence Mosnier, General Manager of Ippag, focused strongly on sustainability, the group’s key theme this year. She reported that the alliance strives to raise awareness for ecological products. It provides its members with guidelines and supports them and all business partners in improving their sustainable alignment, with the aim of initiating positive changes throughout the entire promotional products industry.
In the scope of the autumn meeting, the participants from all over the world engaged in an exchange with several sustainably-operating Indian suppliers. Against the breath-taking setting of Hotel Neemrana Fort Palace that is located between New Delhi and Jaipur in the Federal State Rajasthan, a selected panel of Indian partner suppliers gave an insight into their work and the Indian “Jugaad” philosophy, which according to the principles of frugal innovation relies on pragmatic, user-oriented solutions under the motto “less is more”. The guests let themselves be inspired by the comments and applied the principles to their own processes. Among others, joint criteria for the sourcing were developed and a scorecard entitled “Ple(a)se be more sustainable” was created. The thought process takes all levels of the product selection into account – from the production location, to the usage of the article and possible product alternatives, through to packaging and end of life. According to Ippag, a prudent product concept combined with a precise definition of the target group and the intended purpose of the item is the key to more sustainability in the promotional products industry.
The highlight of the meeting was a workshop with Nilima Bhat, author of the book Shakti Leadership and representative of the conscious capitalism philosophy, a concept that places the social responsibility of companies under the spotlight. Furthermore, the journey to India offered the group members sufficient opportunity to discuss new projects, present campaigns that have been successfully implemented and talk to suppliers about partnerships. There were also plenty of occasion, for an informal exchange in the course of the sightseeing tours and joint evening events.
The Ipaag members will be meeting up again at the beginning of January 2020 at the PSI Show in Düsseldorf.