September 27th 2023

VAIA: A Big Project of Sustainability

BY Anna Caccia

Kaila Katherine

This is the story of three brave and sensitive entrepreneurs, Federico, Paolo and Giuseppe, united after one of the most violent storms, the VAIA storm, that occurred in the Dolomites on October 28, 2018. This caused the falling of 42 million trees under blows of an unstoppable wind reaching the speed of 200 kilometers per hour, or 124 miles per hour.

Kaila Katherine

A unique event which aroused in Federico the desire to take action. 

His question was: 

“What if producing means not exploiting the existing resources but giving back to nature what is already there?”.

Dolomites forest after the VAIA Storm

Hence their start-up VAIA Wood was born in 2019 with the precise intention to create something positive for their ‘wounded’ territory, the surrounding community and the people who live there. A successful and replicable business model applied to wood design. 

Today the word VAIA is no longer linked to a concept of destruction but of growth, a sustainable restart for the protection of nature and the development of local economy. What distinguishes Federico, Paolo and Giuseppe is the positive message they want to spread around the world; Rebirth and Beauty are possible. In a sentence MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

Click the image below to watch the video, and see how.

Their strength is to go beyond the concept of sustainable consumption of resources. The keyword is still REBIRTH: building something new from destruction. They thought to create an items of pure wooden craftsmanship with what remained of the trees felled by the storm.

A not-uniform broken wood not suitable for the creation of big objects; a limit which has become the uniqueness of the VAIA CUBE and the VAIA FOCUS. Each one carved by expert craftsmen and each one different.

VAIA CUBE is a natural sound amplifier for smartphones, an elegant and authentic design element, reproducing a deep and warm sound. You only have to place your smartphone on the speaker and let yourself be lulled by the sounds.

A completely sustainable object at zero impact, with no electricity consumption and made from a recyclable material. 

The evolution of VAIA CUBE has been the limited edition of VAIA CUBE Imperfetto derived from trees exposed to bad weather and humidity for a long time, the ‘most unfortunate’, which however have produced unique and precious amplifiers; VAIA CUBE JOY  in different colours to represent and amplify the numerous human emotions and in the end, VAIA FOCUS, a visual smartphone amplifier, to enlarge through the 200 years old technology of the Fresnel lens within your mobile screen.  

But what really makes the difference is that for every VAIA CUBE sold a new tree is planted in the Dolomites and for every VAIA FOCUS sold it is possible to finance the scientific research on glaciers (with Ca’ Foscari University), to favor alpine clean-up missions (with Summit Foundation) and recover geotextile sheets (with Glac-Up).

A particular attention of this start-up is devoted to the hospitality sector. There is an increasingly growing trend of travelers looking for eco-sustainable solutions and eco-tourism.

VAIA promotes partnerships with entrepreneurs who wants to make their facilities ready to welcome more conscious guests, proposing them a series of activities and initiatives engaging them to live sustainable Experiences or support eco-friendly actions in order to reach the objectives of the 2030 Agenda and communicate their commitment worldwide. 

A BIG challenge!

Until now more than almost 90,000 trees have been planted by VAIA in the Dolomites and we of Vegan Suite are wondering what VAIA’s future actions will be.

We asked its founders directly.

How do you see the future of VAIA?

Our vision is to be PRESENT and have an impact where there is most need by taking concrete actions for the environment and people. VAIA was our first big challenge and our name goes to her. We knew that the storm would pass but that the environmental problems would not. 

VAIA now has a new meaning: it is the symbol of many other challenges such as the melting of glaciers, sea pollution and the xylella virus. Everytime there is an environmental catastrophe, we apply the VAIA model: we create a new product and around that an inclusive and circular support system for the population and the environment.

What do you think is the secret of a successful start-up? And what are the primary actions?

There is no secret to success, rather there are fundamental ‘ingredients’ that must never be missing: a united and compact team, relationships and networks, hard work and commitment. They often say that the IDEA comes first, but to tell the truth its “concretization”, the execution, is much more important. So you need to have a VISION, which must then be translated into action.

Looking to the future with the right LENS… 

A VAIER is environmentally responsible and a dreamer in action, whose force is enthusiasm.

Vegan Suite will continue to follow their story.

 

Kaila Katherine Vegan Cactus Leather


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