Kamik is a brand of family-owned business Genfoot Inc., based in Montreal, Canada. The company has been manufacturing women’s, men’s and children’s shoes for over 100 years in North America, Europe and Asia. In this respect, beyond specific consumer requirements, its relationships with business partners, as well as a conscientious and sustainable interaction with the environment, have been part of its core values for over 20 years. Its product line features winter boots, rubber boots, workwear, sandals, hikers and children’s clothing.
Canada – for Kamik, the name speaks to origins, brand identity and product inspiration. In the language of Canada’s native inhabitants, the Inuit, Kamik means “foot covering”. Kamik´s logo is made up of a whalebone – which symbolizes protection – over a stone landmark, that the Inuit call an ”inukshuk”. Inukshuks have stood for centuries in some of the harshest and most unforgiving regions in the world. Like lighthouses, travellers and hunters in the Arctic rely on them as beacons and signs of a safe passage. Even today, inukshuks represent safety, protection and help. They are associated with the desire for a successful path (in life).
It all started with a man named William Cook, who, in 1932, purchased a company called “Charron Manufacturing” (est. 1898). In the midst of the Great Depression, he took a gamble and completely overhauled the company to focus on performance footwear. He wasn’t out to make fast money; instead, he was forward-looking. In doing so, he saved 200 jobs and built the foundation for the company that he later named “Genfoot”, Kamik’s parent corporation. He proceeded to restructure his factory to make his vision of manufacturing modern and high-quality shoes a reality, which Kamik still pursues every day.
To this day, it is still a family-run business in which Richard Cook, William Cook´s grandson and President of the company, work with his siblings Norman, Stephen and Catherine, as well as his father Gordon.
From one generation to the next, the company’s focus has remained the same. It still makes outdoor footwear for the world and is always on the lookout for innovative technologies.
Maximum quality, warmth, comfort and durability are Kamik’s motto.
For over 20 years, Kamik has been working hard to preserve nature. Its green initiatives are, and will continue to be, integral to its success. Here are some of the processes that Kamik put into place to help drive us forward, while leaving a smaller footprint behind:
• Kamik’s Mission
Sustainability is a big part of what Kamik does. So in 2009, a Green Team was born, a group of executives and employees whose mission is to find more sustainable ways to make and market Kamik’s products. By working together with its suppliers, employees, retailers and customers, Kamik can improve the environment we all live in.
• Kamik’s Manufacturing
Sustainability isn’t only about what is made, but also how it’s made. Twenty years ago, Kamik radically changed the way it manufactured shoes, which not only improved the quality of its footwear, but was a boon for business and most importantly, was the best for the environment. Today, Kamik’s injection molding plants use hydro-generated power, not fossil fuels, and the machines are cooled with recycled rainwater. Recycling rainwater alone saves the plant the annual equivalent of 15 Olympic-sized pools. In addition, in the manufacturing process, 100% of the boot rejects are recycled to make new ones. And it is done under high-quality, low-energy lights that save the plant 157,161 kWh of energy per year.
• The Product Design and Development
Kamik is known for products that are built to last and have good value for money. It is trusted to design and manufacture high-quality footwear that is sustainable, without costing customers more.
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