What Happened to Gobe? A Letter From the Founders

Share this story

Christian, Chris and Minnie here, founders of Gobe, now Urth. Whether you’ve been following our journey from the beginning, or you’ve just found us, we wanted to give you more of an insight into why we changed our name, the difference between Gobe and Urth, and what’s coming in the future.

Words by Christian Gibson & Chris Gooley

Firstly, we want to say thank you. When we started Gobe in the back of a van six years ago, we never thought we’d have so much support from around the world. Today we’re planting over 100,000 trees a month and selling our camera accessories in over 40 countries. Without photographers like you, none of this would have been possible. 

We always knew we wanted to start a business that could be a driving force for positive environmental change. We wanted to give people a chance to make a difference simply by choosing our products. That’s why we plant five trees for every product we sell, and why we’re continually refining the design of our products to minimise their impact. 

It’s also why we make camera accessories. Gobe was built on the belief that photography can be a powerful tool in the global conservation movement because it encourages people to connect with nature. That’s as true now as ever, and as the business has grown, our purpose and vision have grown too.

“We now have a name that better represents why we come into work each day.”

Which brings us to why we changed our name to Urth. You may have seen the rename tagline, ‘new name, bigger vision’. It’s more than just a clever line, it’s the whole reason we’re making this change. 

As Urth, we are taking our positive impact on the planet to the next level. We are expanding our product range and our impact to inspire even more photographers and creators in other fields too. We were restricted with the Gobe trademark to certain product classes, which meant we couldn’t execute our vision to its full potential. As Urth, we now have a name that better represents why we come into work each day and the foundation to achieve our vision.

“Our mission is to plant 1 billion trees by 2032.”

How is Urth different to Gobe ? We are still the same passionate team making creative tools but with Urth we’ve made significant improvements to the quality of our products, refined our current range and developed exciting new products. In the coming months you’ll see new lens filters, camera straps, bags and more. We’re so excited to show you soon. We’ve also partnered with some of our favorite photographers to offer a range of fine art prints that celebrate our biggest inspiration – the planet. 

Beyond new and improved products, we’re also doubling down on our environmental strategy for Urth. We’ve undertaken an independent life cycle analysis so we can know the true impact of each of our products and we’re committing to a minimum 10x positive impact through tree planting – one of the best ways to slow climate change. Our mission is to plant 1 billion trees by 2032. We are determined to do everything we can to continue reducing the impact of our products – from the materials, to manufacturing methods, to transportation methods and so on. It builds doing the right thing into the economics of the business.

A lot has gone into the rename – doubt, fear, a lot of soul searching and eventually a healthy dose of optimism. It took over 3 years to get all the new trademarks, redesign every product, secure domains and Instagram handles, as well as a huge amount of work from our team.

We’re proud of our new name and what it represents. For us, the most exciting aspect of Urth is knowing that as we continue to grow, so too will our positive impact on the planet. We have so much more we want to do and we’d love you to join us on this journey as Urth.

Share this story

2021-01-04T23:57:12+00:00Categories: Photography|