Betancourt’s Hawkers H20 Sunglasses A Bio-Friendly Brand
Hawkers has launched H20, its first collection eco-friendly environmentally responsible sunglasses. Made from biodegradable materials, the H20 sunglasses also include 100 percent sustainable packaging.
The limited-edition collection contains 6 models, all of which include frames and lenses are made with a combination of planet-friendly materials using ground-breaking biomaterials and biodegradables. The sunglasses are made using long-established techniques to recycle existing plastics.
Environmentally friendly products are a passion for Hawkers president Alejandro Betancourt. Since Betancourt and a group of investors put 50 million Euros (US $56 million) in Hawkers, the company has seen significant expansion.
In recent years, the company has expanded beyond its base in Spain with distribution throughout Europe, Asia and North America. In 2018, Betancourt became the controlling shareholder with an additional investment of 20 million Euros (US $21 million).
A Unique Manufacturing Process
Hawkers is committed to sustainable manufacturing, using sustainable plastics and plastics collected from the ocean. Hawkers’ manufacturing process collected tens of thousands of plastic bottles that were littering the world’s oceans to make this limited-edition collection. The process helps to reduce microplastic contamination of aquatic life.
The company believes that our planet has reached a tipping point, with pollution and deforestation re major factors in global warming. Betancourt wants Hawkers to do its part, creating affordable, stylish products while helping to combat pollution and contamination.
The gender-neutral H2O collection includes the following models:
- The One LS Eco Sapphire (blue) is a lifestyle sunglasses made of biodegradable material and is 54-16-145. It includes a category 3 biodegradable lens and a metal hinge
- The One LS Eco Black Brown comes in a solid matte black color and is made of biodegradable material and a category 3 biodegradable lens. The 54-16-145 is a lifestyle sunglass with a metal hinge
- The Warwick XS Eco Black Blue is a solid matte black made of a biodegradable material and category 3 biodegradable lens and metal hinge. The lifestyle sunglasses are 50-21-145.
- The Warwick XS Eco Cinnamon is a red lifestyle style made of biodegradable material and a category 3 biodegradable lens. It is 54-21-145 and has a metal hinge
- The One Eco Polarized Green is a sportswear style sunglasses made of biomass material containing bamboo and recycled plastic. They come with bio tac polarized lenses with UV400 protection and a5-barrel clip hinge and are 54-17-140. There’s a 45-degree cut to soften the connection of the frame and temple
- The One X Eco Havana Pink is made of a biodegradable acetate material. The carey-colored sportswear sunglasses are 54-17-140 and come with a CR39 lens.
The category 3 lenses have UV400 and anti-glare protection. Lens materials break down into carbon dioxide, water and biomass. The earpieces are made with a wider design for better ergonomics and comfort.
All the sunglasses in the Hawkers H20 collection come in sustainable packaging that eliminates the wrapped plastic covering for the box, replacing it with a tape made with recycled and recyclable paper. The packaging also includes:
- A recycled and recyclable carton box
- A pouch made from plastic bottles recovered from the ocean
- Storytelling and warranty book made from recycled and recyclable paper
- A polybag made from biodegradable material
Each pair of sunglasses in the H20 collection can be disposed of in landfills, where they will biodegrade in 5 years. H20 can generate 935,705 watt hours, providing enough energy to light a 60-watt LED light bulb for 15,595 hours.
As an alternative to sunglasses made of conventional plastics, H20 sunglasses are hypoallergenic, lightweight, resistant and durable.
The Hawkers Story
Hawkers began as a small company and a $300 investment. It grew quickly but by 2016 was suffering losses due to a changing fashion industry, leading the company to seek external funding.
That’s when Betancourt stepped in. The great-grandson of Hermogenes Lopez, he has brought an entrepreneurial spirit to multiple businesses.
Following a dozen years building his business skills at Guruceaga Group, ICC-OEOC, and BGB Energy, Betancourt started his own energy company focused on improving production of electrical energy. The company helped build 11 thermonuclear power plants, generating 12,000 jobs. He later joined O’Hara Administration, an asset management company with investments in a diverse group of businesses.
At Hawkers, he has brought on Nacho Puig as chief executive officer. Together, the pair have developed new strategies to grow the business to more than 82 million Euros (US $100 million) in earnings.
Betancourt has shifted the company’s focus from brick-and-mortar stores to online sales, which now account for 90 percent of company sales. He has also expanded the company’s use of social media, university campus brand ambassadors and collaborations with other fashion companies to broaden the brand and build a larger customer base.
In addition, Hawkers has agreements with celebrity endorsers, including Lionel Messi and Usher, and a sponsorship agreement with the Los Angeles Lakers. Partnership agreements have meant Hawkers products have been used by Mercedes-Benz, PayPal, Kia and Smart.