Case Study

Values-based entrepreneurship: Opaline's bubbles (Abridged)

16 pages
November 2022
Reference: IMD-7-2348

Orsières (Valais, Switzerland) April 2020. Opaline, an original juice production company with high social and environmental standards had begun in 2010. It took founder Sofia de Meyer over 10 years to build a responsible and impactful company aligned with her own aspirations, not just a lifestyle venture but one that would capitalize on her deeply rooted values, shared with many in the valley. Opaline was her experiment to prove to the world that a different type of capitalism was possible, one that put human and environmental aspects where they belonged – at the epicenter of a business revolution. De Meyer had regularly been asked in interviews why Opaline was not trying to grow faster, rather than ensuring that its existing suppliers and distributors developed alongside the company. She always replied by drawing an analogy with a growing forest, in which no tree stood much higher than the others or else it would fall, alone, with the next storm. The analogy proved robust but now a more violent storm – a global pandemic – was brewing that was hurting everyone at once. What would it mean for all the projects the team had set out for 2020? And more fundamentally, could Opaline weather this storm as it had already done several times thanks to its strong ecosystem of partners? Would it pay the price for not having extended its roots deep enough when it could?

Learning Objective
  • To understand the principles of values-based entrepreneurship
  • To understand what motivates purpose-driven companies
  • To recognize the importance of having a strong ecosystem of partners
Keywords
Purpose, Growth Management, Scale-up, Supply Chain Management, Work-Life Balance, Community Development, Impact, Go-to-market Strategy, Responsible Consumption, Responsible Production
Settings
Europe, Switzerland
Opaline, Consumer Goods, Food and Beverage
2020-2021
Type
Field Research
Copyright
© 2022
Available Languages
English
Related material
Teaching note, Video
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