- Main leader : NoK Factory
- Type of initiative : Individual initiative (company, etc.)
- Isère / nationale
- 23 rue Le Brix, 38000 Grenoble
- Start date : décembre 2017
A sports industry whose products end up inevitably thrown away, burned or lost at the back of garages because no-one knows what to do with them, increasingly binding EPL (Extended Product Liability) laws, an awareness and a willingness to consume responsibly are all observations that are driving debates today and that call for an in-depth reconsideration of our ways of life.
From this observation the founders of the NoK Factory decided to take action and create a circular economy company whose objective is to reduce the ecological footprint of the sports industry. NoK Boards is their first brand resulting from upcycling snowboards.
NoK is simply the contraction of “NOT OK”, a term commonly used in the industry to downgrade non-compliant products. NoK Boards have made these end-of-life products into a raw material.
Eco-friendly: to reduce sports waste and preserve natural resources
Qualitative: Because the recovery of end-of-life objects can give products of equivalent and sometimes superior quality to the so-called “classic” products on the market
Appearance: Art and design are part of the brand's DNA and can be found in all the products it designs
Lasting: Using products for as long as possible is one of the best ways to reduce the impact on the environment
NoK Boards are a great, environmentally-friendly way to get around town, the seaside and the countryside. It has never been so easy to get around on a snowboard, even in town!
Zero waste goal
Manufacturing skateboard boards alone is not enough to use up all the snowboards recovered. NoK Boards reuses the rest of the material to design phone holders hooked into key chains with recycled kitesurf line, beer coasters, ladder steps, mirrors embedded into snowboard frames after cutting, and many other things. All these objects come from the recovery process; they are both attractive and useful and help move towards the zero waste goal.
Support for associations and strong partners
(See “implementation” tab)
The NoK Family: committed ambassadors
The NoK Family includes high-level snowboard athletes who are sensitive to environmental issues and who want to take their sport towards a more responsible future.
NoK Boards recovers their broken or unused boards at the end of the season to give them a second life as unique skateboards that tell their story.
30% of the profits are donated to partner associations to support projects to protect the mountains and fight against global warming.
The brand has already distinguished itself with several awards such as the kilowatton trophy during the sustainable mobility days in Grenoble, and first prize in the Contest GEM start-up (Grenoble Business School)
Areas of activity
All the skateboards are made from defective snowboards. This reduces the amount of waste generated by the snowboard industry and helps to preserves natural resources. Each skateboard saves the equivalent of 20kg of CO2, or the carbon footprint of 100kg of potatoes.
Upcycling: a source of creativity
Snowboards with a variety of shapes and colours promote creativity. They are the ones who say what can be done with them. The NoK team collects and analyses their flexibility, materials and dimensions, and so defines the most suitable skateboard model.
Devices, tools or methodologies
A social initiative made in France
The second life of snowboards takes shape in Grenoble. The skateboards are cut out, assembled and finished by local companies and institution for people with disabilities.
All cardboard and paper used is 100% recycled and made in Isère. An “Ecolabel” marine varnish is applied to the edges to protect the boards from impacts and damp. Only spare parts (wheels/trucks) are sourced in Asia because there are unfortunately no local solutions that meet the criteria. This point is one of the areas of improvement for NoK Boards.
Prospects for the future
The raison d'être of the NoK Factory is to reduce the ecological footprint of the sports industry, which is why the company is already working on the development of new products from recovered end-of-life sports articles. The goal is to reduce obsolescence at all stages of a product's life so that it never ends up as waste.
It is therefore not impossible that eco-designed glasses, designer furniture, lighting fixtures and other products from the circular economy will appear in the coming months bearing the NoK stamp.