Unilever’s Paul Polman gives step up to David Jones’ One Young World forum

A few years ago David Jones, now CEO of Havas as well as Euro RSCG, had what has turned out to be the bright idea of starting the One Young World forum, an event at which the “remarkable young leaders of tomorrow” could meet grizzled industry veterans.

Jones and his co-founder Kate Robertson, chairman of Euro RSCG in the UK, took a bit of stick for this (blatant self-advertisement critics said) but the second forum, to be held in Zurich in September, is set to attract over 1600 delegates to meet Polman and other business stars like Antony Jenkins of Barclays (who’ll probably be the richest person there), Tony Fernandez of Air Asia (actually he might be richer than Jenkins) and top Turkish businesswoman Guler Sabanci (not badly off either).

There will also be an appearance from Sir Bob Geldof. Well there would be.

Jones says: “One Young World is the only summit where global business leaders can meet the remarkable young leaders of tomorrow. I am delighted that such a renowned group of international chief executives has signed up to take part, and I would like to extend an invitation to other global business leaders to join us as well.”

Among the companies sponsoring delegates (a beer in Zurich costs at least a tenner) are AMD, Google, HP, Lenovo, McDonald’s, Nike and Pepsico.

So Jones (and Robertson) seem to have scored with One Young World. And what a wonderful client schmoozing opportunity too.

I wonder if other agencies will be sending delegates to meet a few of the young folk – and ride shotgun on their clients.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.