Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Eugène Schueller

Today we honor Eugène Schueller (20 March 1881 - 23 August 1957), founder of L'Oreal. As a young man, this French-German chemist used his skills to make hair dye for local hairdressers. Eventually he moved into other products. Today he is mostly remembered for his Nazi sympathies. Ultimately, his pursuit of personal profit developed into what is now known as the L'Oreal Group.

Today the L'Oreal Group still holds to Schueller's philosophy of "research and innovation in the interest of beauty." This international company had over 17 Billion Euros in sales in 2007 and employs thousands of people worldwide. All the wealth created by The L'Oreal Group is a direct result of Schueller's personal profit motive.

With all that said, this is the first somewhat controversial Hero we've honored. Can a Nazi supporter be a Hero of Capitalism? Can personal convictions trump capitalistic tendencies? I'll be sure to put my two cents on this in the comments, and I welcome the opinions of all the readers in the comments section as well.

Schueller on Wiki

L'Oreal on Wiki
L'Oreal Group Website

1 comment:

ann said...

I don't think personal convictions matter. His actions are those of a Hero of Capitalism. I respect his capitalistic contributions, but I hate his Nazi sympathies. It's a strange juxtaposition, but life is full of such things.