India Climate Startups Update

Startup Update

How Apurva Kothari's No Nasties became one of India's most environment-friendly t-shirt brands

2022-08-24 | India

A nice story on how Kothari's fully-owned, self-funded company is innovating to reduce their product's net carbon footprint.

  • Organic textiles
  • Low carbon T-shirts
  • Organic cotton


Notes by Narsi

An interesting case study of a brand that has persistently worked for over a decade on its belief that apparel producers should do enough to offset the carbon emissions their apparel production creates.

While there is nothing new in most of what Apurva's firm does, what sticks in my mind is that he started more than a decade back when carbon footprint of apparel was hardly discussed, and even less so in India.

The other point I note is how difficult it is to build a bridge between niche producers in rural India to the demand outside. 

And the last point that struck me in this case study was scale. While the growth has been healthy for Apurva's brand No Nasties (from nothing to 3 plus crores in revenues in about 10 years), this is not the growth that will make venture capital firms salivate. And therein lies the rub - the disconnect between aspirations of the investing community and the growth prospects for brands such as No Nasties.