Belgian jeans brand HNST secures investment of 1 million euros

Sustainable denim brand HNST has raised just under 1 million euros in fresh capital, the brand confirms to FashionUnited. The investment (950,000 euros) is made by, among others, Anne Chapelle and investment company Freshman, which includes Wouter Torfs and Bart Claes.

HNST intends to use the new capital for expansion in countries such as Germany and the United States. It also wants to double the number of pants sold this year from 5,000 to 10,000, the brand reports to De Tijd. In the beginning, sales only started in the webshop, but now the brand also has various wholesale customers in Ghent, Mechelen, Leuven, Antwerp and even Tokyo. In addition to the geographical expansion, the brand also wants to invest further in product and welcome new team members, according to a statement from HNST. “Such as T-shirts and overshirts made entirely of recycled, organic cotton or regenerative cotton,” the press release said.

As mentioned before, the investment is being made by Belgian fashion entrepreneur Anne Chapelle, who is also a board member at HNST. In addition, there were the investment funds Freshmen and Trividend that have supported the brand since its inception. Freshmen is an investment fund of Bart Claes of JBC, Wouter Torfs and Hendrik Winkelmans. The HNST press release also mentions ‘an Antwerp and a Dutch entrepreneurial family’. Finally, the brand also acquired two subordinated loans, one from Hefboom and one from PMV.

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Capital injection of 1 million euros for sustainable denim brand HNST

HNST was founded with the aim of developing the most sustainable jeans in the world. For example, the company uses denim from only renewable and natural materials and with the maximum achievable percentage of recycled raw materials at that time, Tom Duhoux told FashionUnited in 2018. For example, a pair of HNST jeans consists of 56 percent recycled denim.

Not only are the materials used as sustainable as possible, the dyeing process of the jeans is also done as well as possible. The dyeing process does not involve any chemicals, which is the case with the traditional dyeing process of jeans. All in all, with this way of working, the brand claims to save 6,000 liters of water per jeans.

Even for the label on the jeans, a better option has been chosen. The label is made of jacron, a paper-like material that is biodegradable. It is made from cellulose from wood pulp.

In its own words, HNST shows that circular fashion can be mainstream. “The launch was successful beyond expectations. So we have become even more ambitious. We are eager to grow,” said Lander Desmedt, CEO of HNST, in the press release. “The future – with the help of our new investors – looks very promising.”

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