BEHIND THE LABEL AND WHY THIS MATTER TO US.
In a circle of 50km around Porto, you can find hundreds of factories, with thousands of people working almost in secret for all types of brands from Nordic independent brands to the most well-known fast fashion or luxury groups. In this area where visiting factories by public transportation is as rare and difficult, as finding a final customer, you can find companies of all sizes with a wide range of specialization, endless fabrics, innovations and business realities.
Most of those factories are small family owned in business for decades, who felt the ups and downs of the industry. Some still remember the previous up, but all remember the decline of the 90's, when most of the industry based on cheap labor almost die.
At that time the world just had discovered the new el dorado of the even cheaper Chinese labor and the under valuated Portuguese industry (Textile, leather goods, furniture, ceramic, among others), barely survived and was forced to evolve.
During the last 20 years, many factories re-opened, and the ones that did survive the entire time, survived through innovation, quality products and the capacity of producing small quantities at a high speed to market, helping the main fashion and design powerhouses archive incredible results in Europe and the US.
More recently the Portuguese economy and the Porto region in specific gain a new breath. This new boom in the region was due to the exports of its factories, the arrival of international investments, but mostly the huge growth in tourism.
But until when? Is this really sustainable?
We create SOBRI in 2018 to combine this history, legacy and the cultural diversity available around us, and share with you our vision of a more sustainable future, where we all have a key role to play.
David and Cristiana, Co-founders of SOBRI