2023 Best JEDI Initiative (Justice, Equity, Diversity or Inclusion)

Nespresso x Ali Forney Center - Nespresso USA & The Ali Forney Center

Creating a new way to prepare coffee has marked Nespresso’s brand since its inception in 1986. A B Corp, the company is committed to working on issues related to climate, circularity, and communities.


Nespresso sought to build an emotional connection with employees and customers. The company surveyed its Employee Resource Groups to determine what causes it cared most about, and then launched Pride@Nespresso group, supporting the Ali Forney Center, a New York City-based nonprofit which protects LGBTQ+ youth from homelessness.

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Nespresso’s partnership with The Ali Forney Center allowed the brand to create unprecedented exposure for the nonprofit through an integrated campaign that drove attention to the cause, raised money to support the initiative and community and provided volunteering opportunities for Nespresso employees as a way to give back personally.

Nespresso partnered with LGBTQ+ artist Justin Teodoro to create limited edition coffee cups and accompanying graphic designs, with 100 percent of sales going to support the Ali Forney Center. The Nespresso Boutique in SoHo also got the Teodoro treatment; he painted custom windows and created in-store displays featuring QR codes that allowed visitors to donate directly to the Ali Forney Center. Employees volunteered to paint murals that hung in AFC’s youth shelters. Retail staff were educated about the mission so they could convey the passion to colleagues and customers.


Among the campaign’s achievements: a 70 percent increase in traffic at the SoHo flagship store, a 105 percent increase in social engagement and 300 million-plus earned media impressions. It also launched a long-term platform at Nespresso—The Things We Hold—which is designed to engage both employees and consumers around philanthropic efforts. Nespresso donated $500,000 to the Ali Forney Center linked to the sale of 20,000 painted coffee cups. Consumers who purchased the cups were surveyed and responded with comments like, “It makes me feel the company has a social conscience,” and “I like when businesses I use give back to the community and underserved, marginalized people.” Ninety-six percent of employees surveyed said they felt more engaged with their colleagues and 80 percent said they felt more engaged with the brand.