Graz, 11 October 2022.
The Graz-based shoe manufacturer legero united, the umbrella company for the shoe brands superfit, legero and Think! has had a strong strategic focus on sustainability for years. This is being consistently pursued as part of the company-wide sustainability initiative “luna” (legero united Nachhaltigkeitsagenda, or, in English, the legero united Sustainability Agenda) with a multitude of measures throughout the entire value chain. Now the company has been awarded by the Austrian Federal Environment Agency for its recently created eco-database with the prize for the best measure in the field of environmental and climate protection. The award ceremony took place on 11 October 2022 at 2 pm in the Great University Hall of the University of Salzburg.
legero united sees itself as a manufacturer with a social responsibility and puts a strong focus on the sustainability of its collections and their production. In 2021, the company created its own eco-database. With its help, legero united is now able to calculate the carbon footprint for each of the well over 3,500 products per year (two collections for each of the three company brands) and then reduce it systematically by taking the appropriate measures. Ecological optimisation is carried out with the help of this tailor-made eco-database for legero united, starting from the design phase for each individual shoe model. With the aid of the eco-database, the designers can compare different versions in real time. The database is built on the materials, material consumption and environmental aspects such as carbon, water, chemical and resource consumption. Furthermore, the company’s proprietary eco-database can be used to present sustainable improvements to existing products in a measurable way. The Austrian Federal Environmental Agency has awarded legero united the prize for the best measure in the field of environmental and climate protection for the creation of its eco-database.
legero united’s goal is to manufacture particularly sustainable shoes
The company has already played a pioneering role when it comes to sustainability in the shoe manufacturing industry for many years. The Think! brand collections have been manufactured exclusively according to sustainable standards for more than 30 years. In 2015, Think! became the first shoe brand to be certified with the Austrian Ecolabel and the Blue Angel. In 2022, it was once again chosen by the German textile and footwear retail industry as a top brand in the sustainability category. All three brands of the owner-operated family business have been awarded the industry-leading Blue Angel environmental seal for models in their AW 22/23 collections. As early as 2013, the company launched its proprietary development platform for sustainable materials and products, VIOS, for its women’s shoe brand legero and its children’s shoe brand superfit, which is one of the leading children’s shoe suppliers in Europe. VIOS addresses the issue of sustainability with a comprehensive and scientific approach. With the VIOS Restricted Substance List, a separate standard was then created: It imposes significantly more stringent requirements than the legal requirements or quality seals. legero united became EMAS-certified for all of its Austrian sites in 2022 and received ISO14001 certification for its Indian site. The sites in Hungary and Romania will also be audited by the end of the year. The company is an active member of various industry initiatives such as the HIGG Index, cads, respACT, and IVN. It has committed to participating in the Science Based Target Initiative and gives preference to working only with tanneries that have been classified by the Leather Working Group as having a gold or silver standard and is itself a member of the LWG. Additionally, in 2022 legero united published a sustainability report for the first time, which is to be followed by subsequent annual publications. “We make every effort to minimise the consumption of materials, water and energy at all of our sites to actively promote the use of renewable energy, to strictly separate waste and to recycle it wherever possible, and to also keep our emissions to air, water and the soil as low as possible. In cooperation with our suppliers and partners, we intend to reduce the environmental pollution along our entire value creation chain. Our shared goal is to be CO2 neutral by 2030,” says Stefan Stolitzka, owner and CEO of legero united.