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Daniel & Markus Freitag, co-founders FREITAG LAB, Swisspreneur Podcast

EP #11 – Markus & Daniel Freitag: The Bootstrapped Startup With No CEO

Daniel and Markus Freitag (FREITAG LAB.AG)

July 12, 2017

7:00 – Coming up with an initial marketing strategy
11:45 – Bootstrapping your business
16:06 – Measuring your ecological footprint
24:37 – What they look for in new employees
40:55 – How digitalization influences your business

About Markus & Daniel Freitag

In 1993, graphic designers Markus and Daniel Freitag were looking for a functional, water-repellent and robust bag to hold their creative work. Inspired by the multicolored heavy traffic that rumbled through the Zurich transit intersection in front of their flat, they developed a messenger bag from used truck tarpaulins, discarded bicycle inner tubes and car seat belts. This is how the first FREITAG bags took shape in the living room of their shared apartment. Today their products are available in 29 F-STORES as well as at over 300 resellers around the world.

FREITAG has been headquartered at the Nœrd industrial complex in Zurich-Oerlikon since 2011. In 2014, FREITAG launched a new product, F-ABRIC. These completely compostable textiles are based on bast fibers that are produced using a minimum of resources within a 2500-kilometer radius of headquarters.

FREITAG has not only committed to the circular, closed-loop economy but is also organized in circles: in 2016, the company, which still belongs to the Freitag brothers, abandoned the classical hierarchical structure and replaced it with Holacracy, a form of organization based on self-management.

Memorable Quotes

“When you have a prototype approach, failure doesn’t feel like failure — it feels like learning.”

“Diversity is one of our core values.”

“On a global level, Switzerland is irrelevant. But as an example, Switzerland proves us that you can always do something better.”

“Switzerland needs to be more open-minded, to be less perfect.”

“Treat your co-founder as a brother.”

If you would like to listen to more episodes on clothing brands, check out our conversation with Markus Okumus and Nicholas Hänny.

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