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SOLE TECHNOLOGY: eco-friendly skateboards shoes with one goal: Carbon Neutral in 2020.

1. Organizational Governance

Relations with stakeholders


With a turnover of $ 200 million achieved in 70 countries, Sole Technology is the leader in footwear and apparel sales for extreme sports. In 1988, the Frenchman Pierre-André Sénizergues, former world champion of skateboarding, launched the Etnies brand, in California, based on the desire to have more durable skate shoes. Since then, the ecological ambition of the founder has continued to mature, all the way to defining the goal of being carbon neutral by 2020 while positively influencing the community.


- Create innovative functional and sustainable products

- Set an example for the youth in the world



a / Eco-design: In 2007, the company has measured that 58% of emissions come from the production of shoes, whereas 18% is for cardboard packaging and 8% for the transportation of products. In addition, 95 % of water consumption comes from the textile products. Given these facts, Sole Technology has decided to further optimize the design of its products: a mixture of resin and water acts as glue for shoes, the soles come from recycled old tires or from natural rubber and cotton is replaced by hemp or bamboo, which consumes less water than cotton. The packaging is recycled cardboard.

b / R & D: STI (Sole Technology Institute) filed many patents in bio-mechanics in order to protect the feet of its clients (ex: resistant fabrics, rough coated boards, violent shock absorbing soles, foot maintenance).

The building:

The head office in California was "eco-built" with recycled wood and stone for the panel floors and walls, maximum natural lighting, reinforced insulation, and water saving instalments (ex waterless urinals). Since 2007, 616 solar panels have provided autonomy of energy at the headquarters. A "Blue Bin Brigade" (internal committee comprising the directors of each department) aim to recycle 70% of the waste of the site (United States average 30%, California: 50%).

Awareness of its stakeholders:

Employees: a "green" convention every 6 months

Suppliers (Chinese): awareness of air quality, environmental pact and follow-up audits. Encouraging suppliers to provide hydraulic energy rather than coal.

Customers: For every purchase in the 100% recycled Seed range, a tree is planted in Costa Rica and, more generally 1% of profits are donated to environmental organizations.

Public: co-production of the documentary on the environment (The 11th Hour, the last turn, by Leonardo Di Caprio). Participation in conferences on the protection of the environment (ex Earth University 2011).


§  Numerous awards

§  Commercial success, 20% growth/year, limited to avoid overgrowth (first year: + 300% annual growth)

§  Solar panels of the headquarters paid off = "free" energy saving = 30,000 dollars / year (250,000 kWh / year)


§ 14% of CO2 in 2010

§ Hydro plants vs. coal: -20% of C02 for production

§ Solar panels: 115 tons/year of CO2

§ + 35,000 trees in Costa Rica.

§ Reduction in accidents related to skateboarding § Changing attitudes among suppliers and customers => better understanding of comprehensive of global issues

(2010) 200 M $

Mise à jour le 23/05/2016

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