Geneva, Switzerland, 19 November, 2016 To mark World Toilet Day, Firmenich proudly shares its latest breakthrough technologies that effectively counteract mal-odor. These cutting-edge solutions were developed in the context of Firmenich’s partnership with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to Reinvent the Toilet experience. Approximately 2.5 billion people globally have no access to proper sanitation facilities, and more than 800,000 children, under age 5, die each year from diseases caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation. Evidence shows that even when toilets exist, they are often not used due to their unpleasant smell. To learn more, we invite you to watch this video by clicking here: Smells of Success

“Firmenich sent their scientists to study toilets in the developing world, and they have created a breakthrough set of ingredients that make it possible to eliminate the foul odor associated with toilets,” explained Bill Gates. “Their willingness to help fund the project with us and take risks has been very valuable. They are on a path to deliver an innovative product that also helps improve the world. It’s an amazing partnership.”

“I deeply believe that business is a force for good and can address today’s sanitation crisis at scale,” said Gilbert Ghostine, CEO, Firmenich. “To make sure our breakthrough technologies reach the populations most in need, we are actively engaging with our strategic customers and partners to co-create affordable solutions.”

By making affordable and effective toilet cleaning and freshening products easily accessible across the developing world, business can contribute to making the cleaning and use of toilets more acceptable and frequent. This in turn should lead to a sustainable improvement in people’s health, while also contributing to countries’ economic and social development.

Over the past four years, Firmenich has been working with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation trying to find new ways to solve today’s sanitation crisis. “Because smell was so central to solving this serious public health issue, we knew we could be part of the solution,” said Prof. Geneviève Berger, Chief Research Officer, Firmenich. “The call for action was clear to us, not only because we had the science to counter bad smells, but also, because it resonated with our DNA to have a positive impact through our business and improve people’s quality of life.”

“We know we cannot solve such a great challenge alone,” said Dr. Bérangère Magarinos-Ruchat, Vice-President Sustainability Partnerships Firmenich. “That’s why we chose to partner with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to scale up our impact together. We are also a founder and board member of the Toilet Board Coalition, which is dedicated to driving innovative business solutions to solve today’s sanitation crisis at scale.”

In the run up to World Toilet Day, Firmenich actively engaged in this year’s very first “Global Toilet Business Innovation and Investment Summit” organized by the Toilet Board Coalition in Mumbai. The summit gathered over 200 leading businesses all dedicated to solving the world’s sanitation crisis through sustainable and innovative business models and products.


About Firmenich

Firmenich is the world’s largest privately-owned company in the fragrance and flavor business. Founded in Geneva, Switzerland, in 1895, it has created many of the world’s best-known perfumes and flavors that billions of consumers enjoy each day. Its passion for smell and taste is at the heart of its success. It is renowned for its world-class research and creativity, as well as its thought leadership in sustainability and exceptional understanding of consumer trends. Each year, it invests 10% of its turnover in R&D, reflecting its continuous desire to understand, share and sublimate the best that nature has to offer. Firmenich had an annual turnover of 3.2 billion Swiss Francs at end June 2016.


About World Toilet Day

World Toilet Day is a day to raise awareness and inspire action to tackle the global sanitation crisis – a topic often neglected and shrouded in taboos. Today, 2.4 billion people are struggling to stay well, keep their children alive and work their way to a better future – all for the want of a toilet. Originally established by the World Toilet Organization in 2001, this day is marked each year on 19 November. In 2013, the United Nations (UN) passed a resolution recognizing WTD as an official UN international day. For more information visit


About Toilet Board Coalition

The Toilet Board Coalition is a business led public-private partnership. Its members are multinational corporations, development expert NGOs / IGOs and social investors. Founding corporate members include Unilever, Kimberley-Clark, Firmenich, and LIXIL Corporation who are bringing their commercial acumen, combined with the sanitation expertise of the WSSCC, UNICEF, WaterAid, WSUP, BRAC, and the social investment expertise of DFID, AFD, GCC, USAID, the World Bank and the Stone Family Foundation. These organisations, leaders in their respective sectors, share a joint vision and mission to support and accelerate commercially sustainable business models dedicated to building resilient sanitation systems. They are demonstrating their commitment by investing capital and by deploying experts from across their organisations to work directly with small and medium sized sanitation businesses in the countries and communities most affected. For more information, visit