The Flemish transport company De Lijn and the Belgian sustainable sneaker brand Komrads are coming together with a new product: a sneaker made from old bus and tram seats. This is no coincidence, but a serious step towards sustainability and environmental responsibility.
De Lijn is mainly known for its buses and trams, but the organization now also wants to profile itself as an environmentally responsible company. The company is fully committed to electrifying its fleet and reducing CO2 emissions. Not only with slogans on their vehicles, such as 'move towards less CO2,' but also by investing in innovative recycling programs. Old buses and trams are not simply scrapped. On the contrary, different components get one second Life. For example, a tram in Ghent was transformed into an information kiosk.
“Sustainability is more than a strategic goal for De Lijn. It is a responsibility that we take very seriously,” said Ann Schoubs, director general of De Lijn. “The collaboration with Komrads fits perfectly in this endeavor.”
Komrads, the other face of this collaboration, has long been known for its sustainable ethos. Greet and Mark van Komrads explain: “The fashion industry is responsible for a significant part of global environmental pollution. We want to change that with our reused and recycled materials.”
The joint shoe collection bears the name SEATRS, a nod to the textile from which they are made. With an initial edition of 500 pieces, the sneakers are not only a statement, but also a limited edition. They will be introduced to the public through influencers such as Christophe Ramont, Anna-Livia Smekens and Naomi Timmerman.
The story gets an extra dimension with NEKTARI, a custom company responsible for packaging the sneakers. NEKTARI offers employment to vulnerable groups in society, a vision that fits seamlessly with De Lijn's diversity strategy, which wants to integrate a wide range of talents and backgrounds into its organization.
A bus company and a shoe brand may seem like an unlikely combination at first glance, but when you dig deeper, it's a perfect match. Both companies share the same mission: zero emissions. The initiative also promotes combined mobility. After all, you don't always have to take the bus; walking, cycling or scootering are just as good, sustainable alternatives. And with these sneakers on your feet, you will not only move in style, but also with a clear conscience.