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Patagonia Given Away to Fight Climate Change

Patagonia Given Away to Fight Climate Change

Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard has given up ownership of his company and given it to Mother Earth in a visionary move to help tackle climate change

In a serious bid to help save the environment, Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard has given up ownership of his popular outdoor clothing retailer. The company is now owned by Patagonia Purpose Trust and the Holdfast Collective, with the former owning two percent of Patagonia’s total voting stock and the latter owning 98 percent of the same. Patagonia has committed to using any money not reinvested back into the establishment to fight climate change and protect the planet.  

In an official statement regarding the historic decision, Chouinard writes, “It’s been a half-century since we began our experiment in responsible business. If we have any hope of a thriving planet 50 years from now, it demands all of us doing all we can with the resources we have. As the business leader I never wanted to be, I am doing my part. Instead of extracting value from nature and transforming it into wealth, we are using the wealth Patagonia creates to protect the source. We’re making Earth our only shareholder. I am dead serious about saving this planet.” 

Dead serious is right — in addition to Chouinard’s press statement, he also made it clear that Patagonia’s present and only shareholder is planet Earth. “I never wanted to be a businessman,” began Chouinard in a separate letter to the Patagonia community. “I started as a craftsman, making climbing gear for my friends and myself, then got into apparel. As we began to witness the extent of global warming and ecological destruction, and our own contribution to it, Patagonia committed to using our company to change the way business was done.” Chouinard went on to write about the change in Patagonia’s purpose, since 2018, to “save our home planet,” and the company’s focus on using wealth to protect nature’s wealth from now on. “We can save our planet if we commit to it,” he adds.

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Patagonia was created in 1973 by Chouinard, who became an avid rock climber in his teens. The clothing born from Patagonia was created as a complement to Chouinard’s hardware business, Chouinard Equipment. Throughout the years, Chouinard has helmed initiatives, such as Patagonia Action Works, to help bring about environmental change through Patagonia.

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