Inside Peter Comisar's Personal Mission to Make the Fashion Industry More Sustainable

Story3 Capital Partners, led by industry veteran Peter Comisar, are on a mission to transform the fashion industry from the inside out. As major investors in household names like Harry’s, Perry Ellis, FIGS Scrubs, and Lands’ End, the VC firm is pushing companies towards higher levels of sustainability. 

Peter Comisar, a former employee of Goldman Sachs, is personally passionate about environmental sustainability in the fashion industry, and he has the knowledge and expertise to steer brands in the right direction. Comisar is adamant about the importance of solutions that are not just sustainable but scalable as well.

What Are the Biggest Sustainability Issues in the Fashion Industry?

The textiles industry — and the fashion brands that rely on it — are currently some of the biggest culprits when it comes to unsustainable manufacturing and sourcing practices. Peter Comisar and Story3 aim to help companies change their strategies in all of the following areas:

  • Reducing waste by using recycled cotton fibers, such as those created by Story3 investment Recover
  • Limiting CO2 emissions and water pollution through less use of non-renewable resources and pollutants
  • Limiting water and energy consumption to reduce the ecological footprint of every factory
  • Maintaining ethical sourcing practices that leave local communities better off
  • Maintaining ethical labor practices that prioritize the health and safety of workers 

In addition to these solutions, Comisar and Story3 are all about helping businesses move towards sustainability without compromising on scalability — but what does that look like?

Scalability and Sustainability for Fashion Brands

One of Story3’s main goals is to help the fashion industry make a real positive impact on the environment in the long run. That means finding strategies that keep working when product demand increases and a company’s scale and scope changes. 

Working Alongside Recover

To Comisar, one of the best ways for brands to be both sustainable and scalable is to partner with a source of recycled textiles like Recover. 

Now valued at over $1 billion, Recover is an innovative producer of 100% recycled cotton fibers. They take discarded clothing materials, break them down, and turn them into a high-quality base for clothing brands to use. 

Recover recently received a $100 million investment from Goldman Sachs, and — with help from majority shareholder Story3 — they’ve integrated their products into Lands’ End’s business model. Peter Comisar’s goal is to make use of recycled fibers the norm in the fashion industry, and he views Recover as the most sustainable and scalable source out there.

The Recover Difference

Using just 2.2 pounds of Recover’s recycled fibers saves a massive amount of resources and dramatically reduces a company’s ecological footprint. With Recover, a kilogram of recycled fibers saves:

  • 3,894 gallons of water
  • 56 kWh of energy
  • 50 pounds of CO2 emissions
  • 3 pounds of pollutants
  • 113 square feet of land use

For an industry that’s constantly using up resources and filling up landfills, Recover has a real and actionable solution. Comisar and his partners at Story3 are now majority shareholders in the company, and they plan on integrating Recover’s products into as many brands as possible.

Pushing for Ethical Investing

Comisar’s multi-decade career as a venture capitalist has inspired him to do more than fund the next big thing. In this unprecedented climate crisis, he and his partners at Story3 know that something needs to change in the fashion industry, and they’re ready to make it happen.

As part of Source Magazine’s recent Sustainability Summit, Comisar participated in a panel titled “Funding a Greener Future.” There, he spoke alongside other notable VCs about the importance of investors putting their money towards companies that care about the environmental consequences of their sourcing and manufacturing methods. 

Comisar also emphasized the shift in the consumer mindset towards sustainability in recent years. According to the veteran VC, millennials and Gen-Z are now more likely than ever to pass on products that are made with unsustainable practices and opt for more environmentally-friendly alternatives. 

This change makes it even more essential for companies in the fashion industry to prioritize sustainability and scalability. At this point, it’s not just governments that are concerned about the impact of fashion on the environment — it’s two of the biggest consumer bases for the industry as well. 

Why Focus on Fashion?

To Peter Comisar and his partners at Story3, prioritizing change in the fashion industry makes perfect sense. This multi-billion dollar sector uses up a staggering amount of resources, and it’s at the forefront of many consumers' minds and budgets. 

By changing the way that consumers and companies view sustainability, Comisar hopes to make eco-friendly clothing the new normal worldwide.

This post contains sponsored advertising content. This content is for informational purposes only and not intended to be investing advice.

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