Aera achieves B Corp certification, CEO talks about company’s future – Footwear News
Aera marks a new stage in its activity.
The luxury vegan footwear company earned the B Corporation certification after what the company called a “demanding and rigorous assessment” of its governance, workers, community, and impact on people and society. ‘environment.
As a B Corp., Aera said it now meets verified standards for social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability. The brand also said it was the first luxury shoe company to have this certification.
“When we first founded Aera in 2019, we challenged ourselves to create a footwear brand that sets a new standard by proving that luxury design and quality don’t have to be compromised in the name of sustainability. “said Tina Bhojwani, co-founder and CEO of Aera. “In building Aera, we have been methodical in our approach, measuring every environmental and social impact. Becoming a B Company is a key part of our journey in producing luxury vegan shoes that are made with a sense of responsibility for human, animal and environmental well-being.
Bhojwani launched Aera with the help of seasoned designer Jean-Michel Cazabat and investor Alvertos Revach in May 2019. Named after the Ancient Greek word meaning “to rise,” Aera focuses on quantifying its footprint carbon and, in turn, on the identification of offsetting strategies. for the environmental impacts linked to the manufacture of footwear.
With several collections under their belt and the worst of supply chain bottlenecks and misfires behind them, the Aera team opened Figure Eight in September. Located at 63 Greene Street in New York’s SoHo neighborhood, Figure Eight showcases Aera’s latest collection as well as an assortment of like-minded sustainable and vegan brands in fashion, jewelry and beauty. . The store will be open until the end of January 2022, Bhojwani noted.
As for what this certification means for Aera’s future, Bhojwani told FN she will hold the brand accountable as it considers areas for improvement and growth. “There is currently a great innovation in materials science, I would like to improve some of our materials. We would also like to give more back to our community as we grow with intention and determine how we can make some of our internal processes more efficient, ”she said.
Looking ahead to 2022, Bhojwani is focusing on fundraising. “We have been self-funded so far and have received a little help from our friends and family,” she admitted. “We also launched a crowdfunding campaign at the height of the pandemic, which was a good way to build brand awareness, but we weren’t there yet. We didn’t have our certification, we didn’t have our distribution. Now that we’re in a better place, it’s time to raise funds as we move into next year.
“The message I really want to get across is that luxury and sustainability can coexist,” Bhojwani told FN. “This is really the reason why I started this company. We are fortunate to work in an industry that inspires so many others. So my personal goal is to move the needle forward and inspire others to do the same.
Aera is sold online at aeranewyork.com as well as at retailers such as Nordstrom, Saks, The Conservatory and Lane Crawford.