Today we’re sharing the amazing story of E Ink.
And although you may not know it, the Kindle you see readers using every day is powered by an E Ink display!
E Ink’s electronic paper display technology is a success story born out of The MIT Media Lab in 1997. E Ink’s mission is simple: to make surfaces smart and green.
THIS year, they’re celebrating their 25th business anniversary and two year anniversary with B1G1.
Ever since they started, giving has been at the heart of E Ink’s business. And that has now been amplified by them becoming proud B1G1 Members too.
As members of the UNGC (UN Global Compact), E Ink has adopted all of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. They have also pledged to become Net Carbon Zero by 2040, and have made a promise to have 100% renewable energy by 2030 - which the US branch has already achieved.
Lynne Garone heads up E Ink’s Corporate Learning and Social Responsibility and has been with the company since its early days. She explained that at inception, E Ink formed an employee-driven program called the Ad Hoc Philanthropic Committee (AHPC).
Members of the AHPC would champion different charities and organize events throughout the year to raise money through bike rides, bake sales and clothing collections.
Then there was the E Fund. If an Inker (the internal-nickname for colleagues) had a tragedy or personal problem, they would receive financial support through a combination of employee crowdfunding and some company giving.
In early 2020, partly in response to the Black Lives Matter movement, E Ink wanted to expand their Social Responsibility focus. Lynne took on a new dedicated role, heading up Philanthropic and Sustainability initiatives - further embedding these principles into E Ink’s culture.
She first learned about B1G1 at the UNGC’s Young Sustainable Innovators Program listening to a presentation by B1G1’s Co-Founder, Paul Dunn.
What really resonated with her was the impact that she and her team would be able to create. In her own words:
It’s not about the dollars, it’s about the impact.
Interestingly, E Ink focuses on empowering its employees to have fun with their giving. Instead of linking giving with an achievement, the company provides its employees with their own B1G1 accounts, and tops them up with Impact Tokens - so that they can choose how they would like to give, and select projects close to their hearts.
The impact they’re able to have in the world creates more meaning, and something tangible to connect with. It also helps connect and educate employees about the Sustainable Development Goals.
And more importantly, it puts power into the hands of the employees and encourages them to engage in creating the impacts they want to see in the world.
In two years with B1G1, on both a company and employee level - E Ink has contributed to over 160,000 impacts across all 17 SDGs.
This has included…
21,000 days of access to clean water to people
2,100 meals provided
1260 medical treatments given
Over 7560 trees planted in the world
29,400 days of education given to children who need it
As we move into 2023, E Ink is continuing to build out their employee engagement program with B1G1. The company and its employees want to continue to live out their core values of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Community Service.
E Ink, and its Inkers, are really ‘living the giving’ every day — you might want to let someone you know about it too next time you see them reading a Kindle.
As Sir David Attenborough so beautifully puts it, “Just imagine that!”