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New kinds of partnerships to change the world



ronald de jong

One of the most profound philosophies we carry at Philips is that, for our work to be truly meaningful, we need to make a difference to people’s lives. Success cannot simply be measured in numbers, personal achievements or headlines but in lightening the burdens on others, to make the world a better place.

These core beliefs are epitomized by an innovative, not-for-profit 

project taking place in Africa, one of the first in what will be a series of initiatives that will transform the lives of the world’s most isolated, deprived and fragile communities.


New and expectant mothers, and very young children, in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi will benefit from the Maker Movement – a hub that harnesses the creativity of makers to design, prototype and test locally-produced essential medical equipment, devices and spare parts for Maternal Newborn Child Health (MNCH) care.


Yet the pilot scheme is far more revolutionary than just providing access to healthcare. It’s a project that is part of the Philips Foundation – an independent charity that has set up exciting global innovation partnerships with two of the world’s most important humanitarian organizations, UNICEF and the International Red Cross, designed to affect lasting changes in communities that are disadvantaged or hit by sudden disaster. Through these unique partnerships, we believe, a new kind of collaboration model will emerge; one specifically designed to tackle some of society’s most pressing issues.

change the world

The Philips Foundation is a powerful public-private partnership that forges innovative talents within business and the humanitarian sector, utilizing our technological expertise, problem-solving strategies and data-fuelled insights and placing them in the hands of those on the ground who understand, better than anyone, these communities and their needs.


It is one of the most inspiring initiatives I’ve ever been involved with at Philips and to be part of something so new – UNICEF and the International Red Cross have never embarked on a scheme like this with a multinational before – stands among my proudest achievements.


Taken literally, the word ‘foundation’ means laying a base – and this is precisely what Philips, with its partners, intends to do. To lay a base where none has existed or no longer exists; a base that families can build upon; a base that will support and enrich generations to come.


The Philips Foundation is not about writing checks and encouraging charities and stakeholders to do the best they can with those resources. It is about applying our innovations and capabilities so that they can have the maximum possible impact on the ground. This helps to fulfil our global ambitions of being innovative, impactful and caring, and transforming the lives of three billion citizens a year by 2025.


The Foundation, an independent charity that is not for profit, will show how public and private interests and capabilities can operate in unison – understanding communities, making things happen and responding to people’s needs with scale. After all, we have more than 100 years’ experience in devising innovations that significantly benefit people’s lives in an environmentally-sustainable manner. The Philips entrepreneurial culture means our agility is perfectly-suited to the kinds of emergencies that UNICEF and the International Red Cross deal with all the time. We are two sides of the same coin and the Foundation will show what effective teamwork can achieve.

change the world

For those families in Kenya, for instance, or people in South East Asia battling the effects of sudden typhoon devastation, or those in Latin America who face energy poverty, or disparate communities in sub-Saharan Africa who have been deprived of basic healthcare infrastructure… for all of these communities, we will help to care for the sick, provide the very best pre and post-natal care, ensure emergency provisions are in place for those who need them most and pass on our expertise so that these communities can start to provide for themselves.


And in doing so, we will develop as a company through learning and understanding the specific needs and desires of these communities, and discover more effective ways of overcoming logistical and cultural obstacles. The insights gathered will empower our teams to develop more meaningful and lower-cost products, engage in rapid innovation and create a fresh ideation platform that will fuel the innovation process.

change the world

Placing our innovation expertise within the heart of humanitarian operations fulfils the philanthropic legacy of Anton Philips and his brother Gerard – to exceed in the level of care we offer both our customers and those less fortunate.


Geopolitics has changed forever. Today, it is not lone superpowers or giant corporations who can engender the most dramatic societal changes. Solutions lie in our determination and ability to work together. And we are enormously proud at Philips to be at the forefront of a visionary new movement that is merging business – in particular our people, products and expertise – with humanitarian endeavors to lift those most in need.


Not just for today and tomorrow, but for decades to come.

ronald de jong

Ronald de Jong  

Executive Vice President, Chief Market Leader and member of the Executive Committee

Ronald de Jong joined Philips in 1990. He held a number of positions in Supply and Service Operations and Supply Chain Management before becoming Managing Director and Member of the Board of Philips GmbH in Hamburg in 2004.


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