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Consumers demand more from brands

Illustration of a shopping cart with the earth inside

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Consumers are adjusting their purchasing behaviors to reflect their values, but they’re also sending a signal to brands: Do more for the environment.

Why it matters: Around 40% of consumers have chosen brands that have environmentally or sustainable practices or values, a Deloitte survey found.

Driving the news: Footwear maker Dr. Martens and Tapestry — the parent company of Coach, Stuart Weitzman and Kate Spade — participated in an equity round that gave $18 million to U.K. leather materials manufacturer Gen Phoenix.

  • Gen Phoenix uses leather diverted from landfills, and it’s expanding its platform to be able to use plant-based feedstock and other materials.

Of note: The company, which was founded in 2007, has grown out of working in mass transportation with airlines and rail and bus companies.

  • It now wants to enter the consumer space, where it will supply its wares in the footwear, luxury leather goods and automotive interiors markets.

What they’re saying: “Consumers are looking to brands and companies like ourselves to solve this issue for them without affecting the price or the performance, or the desirability of the end product that they're purchasing,” Gen Phoenix CEO John Kennedy tells Axios.

Flashback: Last year, H&M Group and Lululemon were the lead investors in a $250 million Fashion Climate Fund being raised by the nonprofit Apparel Impact Institute.

  • The fashion industry has a less-than-stellar record on sustainability and transparency more broadly. It alone generates about 10% of global carbon emissions.

The intrigue: Consumer demands on retail are also generating some movement in the resale market.

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