We make sustainable sunglasses for adventurous lifestyles.
What began as two mates starting a sunglasses company together for a bit of fun has evolved into a quest to make positive impacts on an entire industry. We are accountable for the impact our products have on the environment, and we value our purpose above any profits, and so we have taken action.
By providing top class products made from recycled materials, as well as reducing our carbon output with our sights set on becoming carbon neutral by the end of 2022, we are changing the way people think of sunglasses.
30 South was first conceptualised in 2014. Since then there have been thousands of hours of research, over 200 rejected prototypes and just one enduring goal… to develop technical, performance eyewear that looks amazing, and performs even better.
It was early morning on Willard Beach, Ballito. Two Englishmen that grew up together in Spain and now live in South Africa, paddled a tandem Kayak into the Indian Ocean at sunrise. It sounds romantic, and it was, but more importantly it was this very morning when Richie and Jamie decided to put the 3+ years of research into sunglasses technology into action and make awesome eyewear for sporty and adventurous lifestyles.. Fast forward a few weeks, and there were dozens of sunglasses samples strewn all over the dining room table, logos were being selected from printed pieces of paper, and the two Lauren’s (more about them later) were giving their creative opinions. 30 South was born.
Fast forward to 2023 and our story has taken a major diversion. Fuelled by a desire to make a positive impact on a struggling world, 30 South has undergone a complete shake up. Our products are now made from recycled materials, our passion for conservation and the environment is more prominent than ever, and our products have got even better.
Lets rewind to the year 2000 and to Jamie’s first day at a new school in Spain aged 14. Another English boy Richie, leaned over the desk and said, ‘do you like football?’ Jamie did like football, and joined Richie at lunchtime for a game. On that Friday Richie stayed over at Jamie’s house, and pretty much never left…. That was that…. they became best friends, and more than 20 years later they still are.
AKA Richie – CEO, Managing Director, Head of Design, Chief Whip
To describe Richie as a force of nature would be an understatement. He makes things happen, has an unquenchable thirst for adventure and has more drive than a formula 1 car. Often joins meetings remotely while running/cycling/climbing something.
Richie went straight from school into the Royal Marines, at aged 17. He broke the Royal Marine record for the Commando Assault course, completed one tour of duty to Afghanistan and then left the corps in 2010. Since then he has founded several businesses, adventured around the world, knocked off some world records and competed at an elite level in Obstacle Course Racing.
Married to Lauren, a South African.
Favorite past times: Crossfit, Trail Running, Golf, MTB, Surfing.
AKA Jamie/Jay – COO, Director of Marketing and Operations and Stuff
Jamie has a way with words, and turns Richie's million-mile-an-hour ideas into English for everyone else. He also is the person responsible if you are being chased around on social media by 30 South content.
After school, Jamie went on to study a Masters in Exercise Sciences, with the long-term aim of working in professional football (soccer). After his studies however, he decided to go sailing for a year, both to see the world and to save some money to set him up to begin the career he dreamed of… 8 years, 45 countries and hundreds of thousands of sailing miles later… and he could no longer even spell excersize.
Married to Lauren, a South African (Not the same one)
Main interests: Watersports, Trail Running, MTB, Crossfit.