In a world that’s so commercially focused, it’s nice to know there are a few online retailers out there who are trying to do more than sell things – they’re trying to make a positive difference in the world in day-to-day operations. Come, let’s meet some of them.
Irene Falcone, Founder and CEO of Nourished Life
If there’s a beacon for do-good in the “planet conscious” department then Nourished Life are right up there. In 2012, Sydney-based mum Irene Falcone founded the company for two main reasons – to sell organic and sustainable personal care products online, and secondly, she wasn’t seeing her kids enough with her then full-time position.
Nourished Life’s online store, which has its showroom on the Northern Beaches of NSW, now sells thousands upon thousands of organic products, which they research with a team of environmentalists and scientists.
Nourished Life has not only now grown to become a leader in the organic beauty and bodycare e-commerce space, it’s most certainly a leader when it comes to sustainable packaging and planet-friendly business operations.
“The entire purpose of Nourished Life is to ensure our planet, people and furry friends are looked after. Everything from our plastic-free packaging, our commitment to low plastic and plastic free products to our recycling program partnership with Terracycle, we are dedicated to educating our customers and providing healthy and safe products.
Our packages are all sent in beautiful recyclable boxes without unnecessary plastic and our customers are able to return all their nonrecyclable packaging to us to be turned into things like park benches and dog bowls!
I built a conscious and responsible business to demonstrate that it is possible to be successful without compromising on the health of ourselves, our planet or our furry friends.
Everything we sell is sustainably sourced; we have a positive global impact using fair trade suppliers, we support Aussie and local brands, local farmers and global communities.
For our people, it’s making sure that we are healthy and putting safe natural products and support our customers’ wellbeing as well as our own staff, who are working mums who have flexible working hours.”
Dylan Gilbert, Found and CEO of Gent Underwear
Dylan Gilbert founded GENT Underwear in 2016, an emerging online underwear label based in Melbourne that supports the health and wellness of Australian men. 50 Percent of profits are donated to Beyond Blue to support positive mental health initiatives.
“We want to be the best option on the shelf and give people an ethical choice when shopping. We are currently working through the process to become a BCorp and we endeavour to make sustainable choices at all stages of operation,” says Gilbert.
The entrepreneur says that it’s all about trying to level the playing field, and that standing up for something is moving in the direction of a “new norm,” hopefully for the better.
“It is critical for us to stand up for what we believe in – CSR (Customer Service Responsibility) is no longer a point of difference; it is a cost of entry. Big business has created many societal problems and we believe the best way to fix these are through wiser business decisions. If the technology is available and people are willing to pay for it – why wouldn’t you be more sustainable?”
Gilbert quotes: “Doing the right thing is always the right thing” – Gary Vaynerchuk
Tania Austin, CEO and Owner of Decjuba
Moving on from co-founding mullion dollar Cotton On with ex-husband Nigel Austin, Tania Austin bought fashion retailer Decjuba in 2008. The company now has more than 60 stores around Australia and New Zealand, and strong e-commerce operations as well.
Austin says she’s passionate about being involved in a range of charities and Decjuba now heavily supports various projects.
“We’re constantly looking for ways to weave philanthropy into daily life at DECJUBA and support projects that are closely aligned with our values.” Recently the company collaborated with ongoing partner, The Hunger Project, to launch a DECJUBA t-shirt. “100% of the proceeds from this collaboration will be donated to empowering women with the capacity and leadership to end their own hunger. I’m so proud of this collaboration and the impact it will have in India; proceeds will fund the training of 400 women and have a total impact on 1.4 million lives,” says Austin.
Why is it import to be a business that does more than make a profit?
“I’m passionate about making an impact on a broader scale. As a business, we also have a responsibility to use our reach and voice to create change. People want to help, people want to give back, we are always working to make this a reality at DECJUBA.”