Patagonia founder is giving away his company: fight against climate change

Dhe founder and previous owner of outdoor outfitter Patagonia, Yvon Chouinard, has transferred his company to charitable foundations. The 83-year-old wants to make his assets available for environmental protection, especially for measures against the climate change. "We had to find a way to put more money into fighting this crisis while keeping the company's assets intact," Chouinard said in a statement published on the Patagonia website on Wednesday (local time).

In principle, the sale of the company was also an option in order to then donate all the proceeds. "But we could not be sure that a new owner would continue to uphold our values ​​and keep our team around the world," the text continues.

IPO would probably have ended in "disaster".

A initial public offering would probably have ended in a "disaster". According to Chouinard, even well-intentioned public companies are under too much pressure to generate short-term profits at the expense of long-term stability and responsibility.

Yvon Chouinard in April 2019

Yvon Chouinard in April 2019

Image: AFP

According to The New York Times Patagonia's goodwill is approximately $3.0 billion. All profits, according to the report about 100 million dollars a year, which are not reinvested in the company, are to be used in the future via specially established foundations for the fight against global warming and for nature conservation. "Hopefully this will influence a new form of capitalism that doesn't end up with a few rich people and a bunch of poor people," Chouinard told the newspaper.

Last but not least, the company also had a lawsuit against the then US President in 2017 donald trump and submitted plans to significantly reduce two nature reserves.

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