YUCCS sneakers from Merino wool walking comfort made in Spain
Please introduce yourself and your startup Yuccs to our readers! How did you get the idea of Yuccs? Why did you decide to start with Yuccs?
Yuccs is the pioneering brand for sustainable merino wool sneakers, founded in Mallorca in May 2018 with the aim of revolutionizing the footwear industry. My dream was to combine nature, comfort and design in one product and to create a new category, inspired only by premium natural materials, by a fashion product that not only respected nature, but also was completely natural by itself. Only then, would people wearing Yuccs feel free and embark on a journey to discover the world.
The starting point of my idea was the respect for the environment with the premise that the shoe should be the most comfortable shoe ever created. I left behind the well-known skins and plastics and found my key idea, which goes back centuries in history, in a material that was once considered gold in Spain. At that time Yuccs decided to commit itself to recovering for its product a material whose use had long been very limited due to plastic and its competitive prices.
At that time, the company set to work to develop its own optimal material, one that was also very complex. Despite the challenge of developing a fabric from the same fibre, Yuccs planned, researched and, in collaboration with the Technological Institute for Textiles AITEX, finally produced its own purely innovative material. After more than a year and a half, Yuccs had created something the brand and its customers could be proud of: its own fabric, unique on the planet, respectful of the world and people.
Under the motto “Comfy People, Moving Forward”, a shoe with a versatile and classic design was created from a very special material: merino wool.
What is the vision behind Yuccs?
Yuccs was born with the vision of creating a new category of footwear inspired by sustainable natural materials. Each of its products is based on the great idea of comfort, quality and natural innovation and brings something unique to the market.
Yuccs is a modern, creative, young and colourful brand that makes it possible to be more courageous and dynamic when it comes to raising awareness of the natural benefits of Merino wool. Its aim is to offer innovative, accessible and high quality products and it is the top product among shoes.
Unlike traditional sustainable brands that focus on the origin of materials, Yuccs aims to improve the natural and unique benefits of merino wool while maintaining a strong commitment to a sustainable and high quality production chain.
Yuccs is a European brand with a conscience:
Commitment to comfort and sustainability
We manufacture in Spain
We design in Mallorca and manufacture between Navarra, Alicante and Albacete. The value chain is 100% local.
Inspired by natural materials
Its processes consume 50% less energy than those, which are used to transform traditional plastics.
How difficult was the start and which challenges you had to overcome?
I gave up my position as Product Cost Manager at the shoe company Camper to develop my own project and founded Yuccs in July 2017. I immediately started developing the fabric, a process that took more than a year and a half. In May 2018 I was accepted into the workshop program of Lanzadera, an incubator and start-up accelerator for Juan Roig, President of Mercadona. From there, I launched Yuccs to later distance myself from the program and continue alone with the creation of my brand.
My desire to start my own business led me to start the company with an investment of 15,000 Euros. The first capital increase of 50,000 Euros to 65,000 Euros was then made to finance the development of the first prototype. In May 2019, in a second round of financing, the company acquired 300,000 Euros to conquer the Spanish sports shoe market – with a focus on Germany.
Who is your target audience?
The Yuccs generation is a unique generation, like the shoes they wear. They are women and men of all ages, authentic, creative and self-confident, who break out of the classical structure of life and bring the traditional commitments behind them to engage in personal-professional development that takes them to another level.
They also are natural in all the aspects of their life: they look fresh, they adopt healthy habits, they want to know what is in their plate, they take care of themselves, and of the planet. They don’t want to be defined by their age or by the way they dress, but just by their passions.
They are part of what is what is known as “conscious consumption“, and are not slave to fashion. They are demanding transparency as they take an increasing interest in the ethical practices of those they buy from. They are worried about climate change. They seek out ways to make positive decisions about what to buy and look for a solution to the negative impact consumerism is having on our world.
In a nutshell, the Yuccs generation is made up of the sheep that leave their flock because they have discovered that they can make a better version of themselves.
What is the USP of your start up?
For Yuccs innovation in fabrics is important and large investments are made in research and development.
The USP is a sneaker made of exclusive natural fibers from Merino wool and a technology for the sole that was developed 100% in Spain.
The shoes owe their exceptional walking comfort on the one hand to the ultra-light EVA special outsole, which was equipped with rubber inserts for extra strength. On the other hand, Yuccs sneakers have ergonomically shaped, removable insoles made of natural foam. This is made from castor oil, a natural and sustainable source. For added comfort, the insoles are also lined with the same unique merino wool fabric.
The natural fibre of the merino wool is 100% developed in Spain, where the brand works directly with six industrial partners to obtain the final fabric. This, coupled with the design of its sole, makes Yuccs the only shoe in Europe with these characteristics. Yuccs works directly with a total of eleven Spanish suppliers and controls the production process at all times. In this way, the brand can ensure the quality of the materials, sustainable processes and humane working conditions and a genuine fashion that respects the world.
All the parts are assembled and manufactured in Elche factory (located in the Spanish region of Alicante).
In this way, the shoe is fully developed in Spain and meets the commitment to create a 100% local value chain. The production of these unique shoes on the market takes about 5-6 months.
Yuccs focuses on the sale of one exclusive model per year, with the certain difference that always a limited number of colors, which vary according to need and season. Yuccs focuses on the direct sale of its footwear products, via the online channel and currently exclusively via its own e-commerce. In this way, the brand can create a shoe at retail price to the end customer.
Yuccs is inspired by Mother Nature and relies on technology to create unique and innovative natural material that offer an unprecedented comfort experience. Whether for leisure or business, this versatile shoe has eight special features that distinguish it from all other shoes thanks to merino wool:
Natural material – Natural and sustainable
Softness on the skin- Ideal for use without socks
Ultralight with 250 gr
Flexibility and elasticity – It adapts to movement
Temperature control: Warm in winter and cool in summer
Easy cleaning: Just put it in the washing machine and you’re done.
Can you describe your typical workday?
When I don’t fly to Alicante to check out the ongoing production process, I spend quite a lot of time with each member of our small team, planning marketing actions and creative campaigns, thinking of new product launches, always with hundreds of ideas in mind. I enjoy the fast-paced environment of a startup and the days (and challenges) never look like each other.
Where do you see yourself and your start up Yuccs in five years?
Yuccs plans to sell more than 10,000 pairs of sneakers online by the end of the year. In the first twelve months, the company expects revenues of around one Million Euros. For 2020, Yuccs is targeting the sale of 30,000 pairs and a turnover of three Million Euros. The brand’s long-term goal is to consolidate its unique concept of comfort and sustainability in Spain and to conquer other European countries quickly, among them Germany.
What 3 tips would you give other Start-up founders on the way?
Step out of the flock and listen to your inner self to find your professional determination, which should be guided by passion for what you do.
If you have found your determination, hold on to it, so you can mark your way – preferably with the Yuccs on
Always move forward – with determined and passionate team members and partner
More information you will find here
Thank you Pablo Mas for the Interview
Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.