A new organisation created to encourage brands to recognise and respond to the needs of perimenopausal and menopausal women has seen an impressive response to its opening membership drive.

Leading British retailer, M&S, has secured its place as one of the first 48 Founding Partners of GenM, adding to a fast-growing line-up of over 30 brands including Boots, Holland & Barrett, Next, Clipper Logistics and Innocent Smoothies.

GenM, the menopause partner for brands, was co-founded by Heather Jackson and Sam Simister, two business women who found the menopause hard to navigate, and suddenly felt invisible to brands with whom they had built loyalty over the years. Together, they founded GenM with a clear mission: to unite responsible brands and organisations to improve the menopause experience, normalise the conversation, and support underserved menopausal consumers and employees. In this way, Heather and Sam aim to empower women to enter this pivotal time in their lives feeling better prepared, educated and without fear.

By aligning with the 5-point GenMPledge, Founding Partners will commit to a series of intentions, including being a voice for change and better representing menopausal women in future products, services, signposting, campaigns, and workplace policies. In doing so, brands and organisations will take the important first steps towards a positive menopause revolution for the 15.5 million menopausal women in the UK, and 1 billion women worldwide.

Sharry Cramond, Marketing Director at M&S Food, says “We’re extremely proud to become Founding Partners of GenM and are excited about bringing positive and inspiring change to ‘the change’. At M&S, we recognise the part that we can play in committing to better understanding and supporting this underserved audience.”

Heather says, “The rise in conversations surrounding menopause in recent months has been fantastic, from celebrity endorsements to magazine articles and medical awareness increasing on the subject. It’s now time for brands and organisations to come on board and join the conversation. They have the power and ability to drive change and shine a spotlight on this societal issue. We are delighted that M&S has joined GenM as one of our Founding Partners. It’s great to see companies of this size recognising their ability to help drive awareness of the menopause, and in doing so support and serve it better.”

“You don’t have to be menopausal, or a woman, for the menopause to have an impact on your life. It’s something that affects everyone and needs normalising through open conversation and better support. We applaud M&S for getting on board and not shying away from discussing the menopause. We hope this exciting partnership will encourage more organisations to join us and pledge to serve the menopause better,” adds Heather.

GenM’s ground-breaking Invisibility Report uncovered a distinct lack of support, education, and knowledge on the menopause, as well as the extent to which women in our society feel invisible. The report also revealed that 97% of menopausal women believe brands should work harder to cater for them, and over half wanted workplaces to be better set up to support them.

Sam says, “We’re pleased to have over 30 amazing companies, big and small, behind us in our mission, but this is just the start. So many go into the menopause completely unprepared, but for many it’s the longest and hardest marathon of their lives. No one would run a marathon in a pair of slippers, so why are we letting women enter this period so woefully unprepared, physically, emotionally and mentally?

“We are pushing for a world where women and those who experience the menopause can go into it pre-equipped with knowledge on what to expect, clear signposting from brands on which products can help with symptoms, and a support system of friends, colleagues and family who are aware of how it will affect them.”

By engaging brands in the menopause arena, GenM’s collective of Founding Partners will provide the non-medical support that many women seek in order to learn about this transition and build support systems that can help them own and control their menopause, their way.

To learn more about GenM, how your business can get involved in the Menopause Revolution, or the pledge that consumers can take to support the cause, visit: https://gen-m.com/     

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