WWF celebrates innovation in conservation, corporate sustainability and philanthropy

Posted on 02 October 2018

André Hoffmann, Swiss entrepreneur and philanthropist, has been named the recipient of WWF’s annual Duke of Edinburgh Conservation Award.
Gland/Geneva, 2 October 2018 – André Hoffmann, Swiss entrepreneur and philanthropist, has been named the recipient of WWF’s annual Duke of Edinburgh Conservation Award which honours and recognizes valuable contributions made toward the global conservation movement.

André Hoffmann has been engaged in environmental issues for close to fifty years, advocating relentlessly for businesses to become more sustainable while simultaneously helping to build expertise and capacity within non-profit organizations to create greater impact. 

Mr. Hoffmann is the Vice Chairman of Roche Holding, Switzerland, a pharmaceutical company established by his great grandfather in 1896. He also serves on the board of Genentech Inc. in California, USA. He has contributed to the development and success of Inovalon Inc., a data-driven, cloud-based, analytics company providing meaningful insights into the US health system. 

In parallel, André Hoffmann has been a strong advocate and voice for nature conservation and sustainability. He has been a WWF International board member (1998-2017) and served as WWF International Vice-President from 2007 to 2017. In these roles, he helped steer the development of WWF as a global conservation organization, helping raise over US$ 100 million for priority conservation programmes worldwide.

"André’s passion and energy to tackle the planet’s most pressing environmental challenges is inspiring. Regardless of the hat he is wearing - philanthropist, entrepreneur or board member - he always aims to put sustainability and nature first and that is the kind of commitment we need from our leaders today,” said Pavan Sukhdev, President of WWF International. “At a time when biodiversity & ecosystems are under unprecedented pressure, Andre’s vision for conservation cuts across sectors and actors to focus squarely on impacts and creating a sustainable future for us all.”

André Hoffmann has also served on the Boards of Wetlands International and the Global Footprint Network. He is the President of Fondation MAVA, a conservation foundation committed to conserve biodiversity, and President of the Fondation Tour du Valat research institute. He is also a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Luc Hoffmann Institute and he recently created the Hoffmann Global Institute for Business and Society (HGIBS/INSEAD) which aims to reconcile business and society.
“Receiving this award, 20 years after my father, is a great honour. I am grateful to the committee for having selected me as I am not an obvious choice. I am not a scientist active in the field or lab but rather move in boardrooms and philanthropic forums to explore issues and beliefs around nature and humanity. Business cannot continue as before; there is a need for change,” said André Hoffmann. “Nature is essential to our survival and there is no future for business in the longer term without recognizing this. In our closed earth system, we simply cannot surpass our planetary limits. We need to focus on a better use of natural and social resources. It will not be possible for businesses to be profitable in the long term without taking environmental and social issues into consideration.”

Mr. Hoffmann firmly believes in business as a force for good. As a member of the Board of SystemIQ, he helps transform economic systems in line with the sustainable development goals. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the World Economic Forum and of the Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution in San Francisco.

The Duke of Edinburgh Conservation Award was created in 1970 and is presented annually by WWF for outstanding service to the environment. This year’s award was presented by The United Kingdom Permanent Representative to the UN and other international organizations in Geneva, Ambassador Julian Braithwaite, on behalf of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh.


For further information:
Rucha Naware | WWF International | +32465751339; rnaware@wwfint.org
André Hoffmann, Swiss entrepreneur, philanthropist and recipient of WWF’s Duke of Edinburgh Conservation Award.
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