How Adam Goodes Inspired Local Supply
Adam Goodes and Sean Satha
have designed you your next pair of shades
A pair of lost sunnies led to the launch of a new Australian brand and the beginning of a beautiful friendship between a budding entrepreneur and an AFL legend.
When Sean Satha met Adam Goodes a decade ago, the two men shared a beer at the launch of a T-shirt brand by Goodes’ Sydney Swans teammates Amon Buchanan and Jude Bolton. The event took place in
Sydney at Deus Ex Machina, a motorbike shrine packed with fast metal and retro moto-style clothing, but Sean was more interested in speaking with the two-time Brownlow medal winner than he was in the merchandise.
“Here was this guy who was at the very top of his game, but he was just chatting to me as a true gentleman and making me feel at ease,” says Sean. “He was so charming and polite and not arrogant at all, and it made me realise you can be a nice guy and be successful. Adam had that sense of leadership that comes from being a really empathetic person and thinking: how can I make things better for this person?”
Sean Satha of Local Supply
Six years later, Sean had this in mind when his affordable sunglasses brand, Local Supply, was born out of his and other people’s frustration with misplacing expensive pairs of sunglasses.
“I lost a pair of sunglasses at the pub one afternoon; it was a pretty sad Sunday because they’d cost me more than a week’s rent, and then I couldn’t find a pair of quality sunglasses that were reasonably priced
to replace them,” he says.
Where some people would see red, Sean saw an opportunity and in 2013 launched Local Supply as a range of low-cost designer sunglasses. “I wanted a quality pair of sunglasses for under $100 that you didn’t have to babysit when you went to the pub or to the beach,” he says.
LOCAL SUPPLY | STATION BKM2 SUNGLASSES
A former engineer, Sean quit his job as an investment banker and channelled his skills from both previous professions into building then marketing a prototype of his perfect pair of everyday sunglasses. Just four years after the brand began in his Bondi living room, it’s garnered an impressive list of local and international stockists, including David Jones in Australia, BEAMS and United Arrows in Japan and Opening Ceremony and American Rag in the USA. Local Supply sunnies have graced some of the world’s most famous faces, from Taylor Swift and Cara Delevingne to Ben Stiller and Arnold Schwarzenegger. And, closer to home, Sean’s fellow Bondi local Adam Goodes is now among his biggest fans.
“When I met Sean he was a lovely guy, but I also really love his story since then,” says Adam. “I’m really impressed that Sean had a successful career as an investment banker but that, when he realised he didn’t really want to do that anymore, he had the courage and commitment to pursue his true passion.”
LOCAL SUPPLY | COASTAL SUNGLASSES
The Indigenous former footballer has also pursued his passions. In 2009, with fellow former teammate (and cousin) Michael O’Loughlin, he established the GO Foundation, which funds scholarships for Indigenous children in inner Sydney. He also advocates for the “Recognise Movement” and the “Racism. It Stops
With Me” campaign. His anti-racism activism saw him named 2014 Australian of the Year, winning admiration and support from countless Australians, including Sean.
“We’re huge supporters of Adam’s campaigning against racism,” says Sean. “Diversity and inclusiveness are an integral part of our brand ethos. Our products are for locals everywhere − regardless of your gender, sexuality, race or socioeconomic status. We’re all locals. We’re all different, but we’re all the same.”
LOCAL SUPPLY | CITY SUNGLASSES
Sean has taken inspiration from the way Adam has responded to challenges, including racism and sporting injuries, while Adam says he is impressed by the way the young entrepreneur has overcome the challenges of building a new business from scratch.
“I’m like everyone out there in that I hate wasting money on sunglasses that you lose or break, so it’s a great business idea,” he says of Local Supply. “It fills a real void in the market but, more importantly, Sean’s story teaches us that you can live your life every day waking up and going to work with some level of happiness, or you can take a risk and challenge yourself to do something that will bring much more meaning and satisfaction to your life.”
Sean has also worked hard to keep costs down while still producing a high-quality product. “By using the latest production technology, paired with high-quality materials, we’ve been able to increase the efficiency of our production processes by reducing material wastage and manual labour. It’s helped us achieve better cost efficiencies, better wages for our workers and lower environmental impact, all while retaining the quality of our products and the integrity of our brand.”
LOCAL SUPPLY | AVENUE BKG1 SUNGLASSES
For other young entrepreneurs wanting to follow in his footsteps, Sean has this advice: “Be patient, stay focused and don’t say yes to every opportunity. Some things are hard to rush and sometimes forcing these things will just wear you out.”
As for himself, he continues to be inspired by his mentor’s empathy, professionalism and leadership. In his Australian of the Year acceptance speech, Adam encouraged Australians to follow the Golden Rule: treat people the way you want to be treated.
“I think that’s really powerful,” says Sean. “He’s set an example for everyone to follow.”
Words by Georgina Safe. Photography by Jesse-Leigh Elford.
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