Lucas Fuhrmann wants to make the textile industry more sustainable. He is the CEO and co-founder of LOVR. His company offers the first leather alternative that consists of agricultural waste and is completely free of plastic. The production of LOVR is based on the idea of a regional and carbon neutral circular economy.
Where did the idea for LOVR come from?
LOVR arose out of the frustration of realizing that the so-called sustainability of the textile and fashion industry was nothing but false promises.
When I was at the end of my bachelor’s degree, I did an internship at a manufacturer in the industry that was famous for its fair and sustainable products. Having the chance to see behind the scenes was frustrating… Greenwashing is a growing reality.
That’s why I started working on solutions to make this industry a better and greener place.
And that was the beginning of LOVR. A unique alternative to leather made from industrial hemp residues.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Working in an aligned and harmonious team is the key to productivity and success, whether on a daily short plan or a long-term plan.
That’s why every day, in the first 30 minutes of the morning at work, I meet with my co-founders Julian and Montgomery for updates and to set the plan for the day. And after we are in agreement, we start to put our plans into practice.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Things won’t happen overnight, and it’s important to keep that in mind. I would say that what brings ideas to life is persistence.
Work at it daily, step by step. The achievement of great ideas is only possible if you take one step at a time, with constancy and steadfastness.
What’s one trend that excites you?
I think everything related to carbon storage in agricultural systems is fascinating and exciting. If I wasn’t working on LOVR, I would be working on something related to this, definitely.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
The best way to be productive is to analyze what makes you unproductive and fight it.
I can say that one of the things that can ruin your time the most is self-doubt. These thoughts can hold you back and make any progress impossible.
That is why I have the habit of discussing doubts with my team. It is the most effective way to overcome them.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would like to be prepared to understand that things can take longer than expected. When I started working on this, I thought it would take about half a year to set up a business. Now, six years later, I still consider it a work in progress.
But in retrospect, maybe I wouldn’t have said this to my younger self. Perhaps, because of the sense of urgency that comes from immaturity, he would not have taken up the challenge.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I think I am a good singer, and probably not many people would agree with me. But I am.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I would say it is the combination of working on something I really love and knowing that the result is a very positive impact on the planet. The sum of these two factors is the most motivating combination an entrepreneur can have, in my opinion. I think it would be great if everyone could combine their passion with a positive ecological legacy.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
As I see it, LOVR is growing because we work on something that really matters. People have been very helpful pushing this business forward, because they understand that what we do is genuinely good for the planet and the future.
We are getting support from amazing, experienced experts that are aligned with our proposal. It is not about greenwashing, it is not about making quick money, it is really about changing something for the better. This is the best strategy.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
It is always important to think ahead and have alternatives in your pocket. In the past I have been too focused and too excited about a single plan, and when things went wrong, I had no other option to fall back on.
This happened, for example, when we were working with a production partner and things ended up not happening. Since we didn’t have a plan B, it ended up costing us a lot of time.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I’ll go back to what I said earlier: something to do with carbon storage in the agricultural sector. I’m still not 100% sure how it would work, or what is the business model behind it, but I think it is an extremely interesting space to look at.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I think it was a dinner with friends, because it was fun. Easy.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I don’t use any special software to help me be productive. It is just the usual stuff.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Maybe it sounds quite cliché, but I really like The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. It is about working on your dreams, and not being afraid of anything. I believe that the message behind it is simple and true: follow your dreams and they will come true.
What is your favorite quote?
I will appeal to the short and simple: Just do it.
- Turn your indignation with reality into fuel to create better alternatives.
- Work on something that brings a positive ecological legacy to the planet.
- It may take longer than expected, but with persistence, step by step, great ideas can be achieved.
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.