11 Eco Friendly Retail Business Success Stories [2024]

Updated: November 19th, 2023
Start An Eco Friendly Retail Business

Here are some real life success stories of starting a eco-friendly retail business:

1. Jungle Culture ($1.62M/year)

Jamie Skinner and his business partner, Chris, started Jungle Culture as a way to fund their traveler lifestyles and create positive change. They initially focused on selling bamboo straws and quickly became one of the world's biggest bamboo straw companies. Their success led them to switch their focus to eco-friendly products as a whole, and Jungle Culture now generates over $1 million in revenue.

How much they make: $1.62M/year
How much did it cost to start: $1.2K
Current team size: 4

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How We Started A $110K/Month Ecommerce Brand Of Eco-Friendly Products

Jungle Culture, an e-commerce brand that sells eco-friendly products, started with just one product and turned over just over $1,000,000 in a year by sourcing products directly from farms, small craft workshops, and ethical factories and selling them online worldwide.

About
Jamie started Jungle Culture over 6 years ago
Revenue
Jamie grew the business to $135K/month
Costs
It cost Jamie $1200 to start the business
Read by 10,191 founders

2. Boomerangz Footwear ($480K/year)

Brad Munro, the founder of Boomerangz Interchangeable Thongs, came up with the idea after experiencing multiple thong blowouts while traveling in Europe. Recognizing a gap in the market, Brad and his business partner developed thongs with interchangeable bases and straps to minimize blowouts and offer customization options. They launched the product through a crowdfunding campaign, raising $50,000 in sales within six weeks and eventually expanding their distribution to multiple countries.

How much they make: $480K/year
How much did it cost to start: $50K
Current team size: 3

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How I Built A $300K/Year Online Flip Flop Shop

Boomerangz Footwear created interchangeable thongs designed to minimize blowouts and with patented bases and straps, resulting in a successful crowdfunding campaign that raised $50,000 in 6 weeks and led to the company being stocked in over 40 stores around Australia and expanding globally.

About
Brad started Boomerangz Footwear about 10 years ago
Revenue
Brad grew the business to $40K/month
Costs
It cost Brad $50000 to start the business
Read by 9,996 founders

So... can you actually make money with a eco-friendly retail business?

Of course. There are millions to be made in this industry.

But how?

  1. Research real, profitable businesses and see exactly how much money they make.
  2. Study exactly what works, and what doesn’t.
  3. Take action, because now you have the roadmap.

Join Starter Story and build your next big thing:

Start Now

3. LastObject ($2.88M/year)

Isabel, a co-founder of LastSwab, along with two other independent designers, came up with the idea for their reusable cotton swab after researching harmful single-use items and finding that cotton swabs were a major contributor to pollution. They launched their business through crowdfunding platforms and have since attracted and retained customers through Instagram and newsletters. Their goal is to create a range of LastItems to reduce single-use items and create a more sustainable world.

How much they make: $2.88M/year
Current team size: 6

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How We Raised $1.2MM+ To Create The First Reusable Cotton Swab

Danish start-up LastSwab, co-founded by Isabel, has received €1m ($1.2m) in crowdfunding on platforms including Kickstarter and Indiegogo, exhibiting the appetite for reusable products that reduce environmental pollution.

About
Isabel started LastObject about 5 years ago
Revenue
Isabel grew the business to $240K/month
Read by 6,674 founders

4. Root Bridges ($324K/year)

Udit, an investment banker with a passion for nature and greenery, started Root Bridges, an online plants store, to bring greenery into people's lives. With a background in economics and no experience in eCommerce or horticulture, Udit learned everything from scratch, starting with pop-up stores and gathering feedback from customers. The business now clocks sales of $350,000 per year and is focused on attracting and retaining customers through SEO, offering free plant feed, better prices, and free replacements for in-transit damage.

How much they make: $324K/year
How much did it cost to start: $46K
Current team size: 11

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From Investment Banker To Starting A $350K/Year Plants Store

Root Bridges is a profitable online plant store in India that delivers hard-to-find indoor plants, clocking sales of $350,000 per year and grown 200% YoY during the pandemic, offering free plant feed on orders, better prices than marketplaces, and free replacements for in-transit damage.

About
Udit started Root Bridges over 8 years ago
Revenue
Udit grew the business to $27K/month
Costs
It cost Udit $46000 to start the business
Read by 4,726 founders

So... can you actually make money with a eco-friendly retail business?

Of course. There are millions to be made in this industry.

But how?

  1. Research real, profitable businesses and see exactly how much money they make.
  2. Study exactly what works, and what doesn’t.
  3. Take action, because now you have the roadmap.

Join Starter Story and build your next big thing:

Start Now

5. Plaine Products ($2.4M/year)

Hello! Meet Lindsey McCoy, the CEO of Plaine Products, a hair and body care company that is on a mission to eliminate single-use plastic bottles. After witnessing the environmental impact of plastic pollution during her time in The Bahamas, Lindsey decided to create a solution by offering refillable aluminum bottles. With over 300,000 plastic bottles diverted from landfills and oceans, Plaine Products is making a significant impact in the fight against plastic waste.

How much they make: $2.4M/year
How much did it cost to start: $50K
Current team size: 6

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We Turned Our Passion For Sustainability Into a $2.4M/Year Hair & Body Care Brand

Plaine Products CEO, Lindsey McCoy, rids the world of single-use plastic bottles and turns her passion for sustainability into a $2.4M/year hair and body care brand, diverting over 300,000 plastic bottles from landfills and oceans.

About
Lindsey started Plaine Products about 7 years ago
Revenue
Lindsey grew the business to $200K/month
Costs
It cost Lindsey $50000 to start the business
Read by 3,808 founders

6. Big Bee, Little Bee ($240K/year)

Founder Amy Leinbach came up with the idea for Big Bee, Little Bee when her 2.5-year-old daughter wanted to wash herself but couldn't find a suitable tool. She decided to create the ScrubBEE silicone scrubber, which quickly gained popularity and became her top-selling product. Despite the challenges of 2020, Leinbach managed to grow her business significantly, gaining features on Good Morning America and expanding her retail partnerships.

How much they make: $240K/year
How much did it cost to start: $15K
Current team size: 1

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How My 2 Year Old Inspired A Business Idea That Made It On Good Morning America

"Founder of Big Bee, Little Bee discusses how her daughter inspired her innovative products, including the top-selling Easy-Grip Silicone Scrubber, and how they managed to grow their business after being featured on national TV shows, despite challenges in 2020."

About
Amy started Big Bee, Little Bee about 8 years ago
Revenue
Amy grew the business to $20K/month
Costs
It cost Amy $15000 to start the business
Read by 2,346 founders

So... can you actually make money with a eco-friendly retail business?

Of course. There are millions to be made in this industry.

But how?

  1. Research real, profitable businesses and see exactly how much money they make.
  2. Study exactly what works, and what doesn’t.
  3. Take action, because now you have the roadmap.

Join Starter Story and build your next big thing:

Start Now

7. Paper Saver ($72K/year)

Jon Yong, an architect, came up with the idea for the Paper Saver after constantly printing off draft designs that became obsolete moments later. He devised a handmade "Paper Saver" out of cardboard with a pocket inside, which allowed him to insert used paper and access the blank sides as pages of a notebook. Intrigued by the interest it generated from colleagues and clients, Jon and his partner launched the Paper Saver in 2015, and it has since grown year-on-year by an average of 20%.

How much they make: $72K/year
Current team size: 1

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How We Invented And Launched A Notebook That Saves Paper

The Paper Saver is a sustainable notebook that reduces paper waste by utilizing used paper as pages, and has grown YOY on an average of 20% since its 2015 launch, with an expanded range including the Leather Paper Saver and the Sparkle Paper Saver for Kids.

About
Michelle started Paper Saver about 9 years ago
Revenue
Michelle grew the business to $6K/month
Read by 6,911 founders