Stephen: Patagonia clothing owner gives away company to fight climate change
Written by Stephen Lethbridge on September 15, 2022
The outdoor clothing maker Patagonia is now a nonprofit organization devoted to combatting climate change and protecting undeveloped land around the globe. The billionaire owner and founder of the company, Yvon Chouinard has decided to give away the company he founded 50 years ago. He’s giving up an estimated $100 million a year in Patagonia profits.
In a statement on the brand’s website, Chouinard wrote “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 … While we’re doing our best to address the environmental crisis, it’s not enough. We needed to find a way to put more money into fighting the crisis while keeping the company’s values intact.
“Here’s how it works: 100% of the company’s voting stock transfers to the Patagonia Purpose Trust, created to protect the company’s values; and 100% of the nonvoting stock had been given to the Holdfast Collective, a nonprofit dedicated to fighting the environmental crisis and defending nature. The funding will come from Patagonia: Each year, the money we make after reinvesting in the business will be distributed as a dividend to help fight the crisis.”