French fashion brand Veja, known for its sustainable sneakers, supplies shoes to 1,800 retailers in 45 countries and has generated $ 21 million in revenue on 550,000 pairs of sneakers, according to a CNN report (https: // edition .cnn.com / 2018 /10/28/business/veja-sneakers/index.html).
Veja’s founders, Sébastien Kopp and François-Ghislain Morillion, were inspired by their visit to clothing and food factories in South America, Asia and Australia while leading a non-profit group.
When they visited, they were deeply concerned with the way the products were made.
Veja was therefore founded in France in 2005, three years after Sébastien and François created a non-profit organization that studies corporate social responsibility policies issued by companies around the world.
Aiming to make sneakers made from the most environmentally friendly materials and involving ethical suppliers, Sébastien said the idea behind the brand was to “rethink the creation of a popular product”.
The couple then bought rubber from rubber tappers in the Amazon, although it was priced higher than synthetic materials, and used organic cotton grown in such a way that it could return nutrients to the soil, rather than causing it. damage due to the use of chemicals.
“It helps to fight against deforestation, because [they] would rather work for us than cut trees to raise cattle, ”Sebastien told CNN of rubber.
To create her shoes, Veja also uses recycled plastic bottles by making waterproof mesh for some of her sneaker models. The bottles were reportedly collected from the Brazilian streets of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo.
The shoe-making process is not cheap, as the price of the sneakers has been reported to range from $ 95 to $ 195. Despite the relatively high price, sales have reportedly increased by 50% per year since 2015.
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“A lot of our customers find out what’s behind Veja after buying a pair or two,” said Sebastien, referring to the company’s sneakers, which take inspiration from vintage volleyball shoes.
“People want to change the way they consume a lot more than before.”
Celebrities such as Emma Watson, Marion Cotillard and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex have been pictured wearing Veja shoes, which can be identified by its minimalist ‘V’ logo. (acr / mut)