There’s not much I can tell you about Ecuador. I’m decent enough at remember capital cities so I know theirs is Quito, but beyond that and a few footballers I think might be from the South American nation I’m embarrassingly unclued-up on Ecuador. One additional thing I can tell you is it’s home to the Cotopaxi volcano which gives the outdoor brand Cotopaxi its name.
Shall we cross over to my Wikipedia research before I exhaust my scant bank of knowledge? Yes, let’s.
So, like Patagonia, Cotopaxi is essentially an American brand with its eyes fixed south for inspiration. While the famed Californian brand founded by Yvon Chouinard takes its name from a region that spans Chile and Argentina, Cotopaxi’s route to a South American name is altogether more interesting.
Founded by Davis Smith in Salt Lake City, Utah, Cotopaxi is the product of Smith’s varied childhood, a vast amount of which was spent in South America. Indeed, he now spends most of his time in Recife, Brazil, where his appetite to create ‘Gear for Good’ is channelled through his passions for adventure and leaving a positive impact on people and the world. His charitable and religious background led to a childhood spent in Latin America, settling in Ecuador which eventually gave him the inspiration to create Cotopaxi.
A successful business background selling everything from pool tables to baby products resulted in the birth of Cotopaxi, with Smith citing his desire to make a difference to people as the inspiration behind the brand. Just selling products is one thing, but doing so as a means to enhance the lives of others is definitely more wholesome and pretty inspiring too.
Clothing brands today increasingly find themselves focusing more on their mission than the simple pursuit of perfect products. To create more clothing that the world doesn’t actually need, all brands need to offer more than just something functional and Cotopaxi, via Smith’s mission knows this more than most.
So on the face of it, with the clocks having gone back here in the UK, the desire for some cosy clothing that contrasts with the dull clouds and the latest storm to be named after an increasingly obscure name is natural. But when seeking something interesting that works, Cotopaxi is the ideal candidate. This isn’t a company owned by a vast business group, where profit finds its way into the pocket of someone who already has loads of cash. This is a brand that makes everything it does about other people, significantly other people who need more help than most.
Whether that be in Ecuador or other areas of Latin America, Cotopaxi continues to be the vehicle for leaving a positive impression on the world through clothing.
See more Cotopaxi here.