Rob Drake-Knight

rob_drake-knight-rapanui3.jpgRob Drake-Knight, co-founder of Rapanui

Rapanui is a leading ethical clothing company.

Our products are made from the highest quality organic natural fabrics, in Fairwear Foundation audited factories and their production is powered by renewable energy whereever possible.

Our award winning model of sustainable practice has secured us business with Ben and Jerry’s and invitations to present to multinational organisations and universities.

My brother Martin and I are keen surfers and we see the impact of not paying attention to the environment every time we get in the water. Our local beach is one of the worst affected in the UK for beach litter and has made us both seriously ill from field run off and CSOs.

This personal experience as well as my brother's studies in Renewable Energy Engineering was the turning point. We knew vaguely that clothing industry was bad news since our GCSE geography studies on sweatshops, and from the age of 15 the idea has been bubbling away under the surface. We knew we wanted to make a difference some how.    We spent a long time researching and eventually launched our modest 2008 range with a holistic approach to sustainability with a view to the best net effect on the environment.We aim to be the leading ethical clothing company in the UK in 5 years time.

We have had lots of interest because of our involvement in Striding Out and the Future 100, and gained customers and PR contacts too. We’ve been introduced to many useful schemes and we’re hoping to take advantage of the Future Jobs Fund to employ new recruits, which was introduced to us by Striding Out.