Every month, we take a closer look at one of our favourite sustainable and socially responsible fashion businesses to find out more about them and their ethos. This month, we spoke to Industrial Revolution II - a garment factory with a difference.
1. What is Industrial Revolution II?
Industrial Revolution II is a new kind of garment factory dedicated to revolutionizing the approach to profitability in today’s global economy. The factory will produce quality knitwear as well as provide digital printing services focusing on quality and flexibility over volume, allowing brands to achieve their production needs responsibly.
2. What inspired you to do start your business?
Initially, IRII was born out of frustration with the lack of efficacy of traditional aid programs in Haiti as well as a desire to create sustainable change through job creation and economic development. With a stronger call for tougher manufacturing regulations following the Rana Plaza tragedy, our goal is to prove that true change really begins when a shift occurs within the mindset of both members of the industry and consumers. Our mission is to push this mindset shift and prove that creating social progress and a thriving business should not be mutually exclusive efforts.
3. Socially responsible manufacturing is becoming more and more important in the fashion industry. What can consumers do to ensure that the clothes and accessories they buy are made responsibly?
One of the most important things consumers can do is research. There are a number of brands that exist with a foundation based on supplying consumers with clothing produced responsibly. With consumers starting to care more and more about how the clothing they purchase is made, that extra step prior to purchase goes a long way.
4. What is the most fun part of your job?
The greatest aspect of what we do is knowing the impact we can have within Port-au-Prince and hopefully other regions as we continue to grow and expand. Through our shared value business model, the 50% of profits we invest into programs for our employees, their families, and our neighbors isn’t just about giving back, it’s about investing back effectively to create sustainable change and economic development.
5. What is next for Industrial Revolution II?
Long-term, we want to create a brand identity that becomes known globally and speaks directly to consumers. Our hope is to grow to six times the size of the initial factory in Port-au-Prince, proving the success of our economic model thereby attracting a cluster of associated businesses to the region and expanding into vertically associated new businesses.
6. What is your current favorite item that IRII produces?
Full production at the factory will begin in September and we’re excited about some of the quality knitwear we’ll be creating for our present and future clients.
Photos courtesy of Industrial Revolution II.
Check out the Industrial Revolution II website here!