VANCOUVER – Lululemon, the Canadian athleisure brand, says it has launched an investigation into its sourcing after a report in the Guardian claimed female factory workers supplying the brand were beaten and physically assaulted. The claims, based on an investigation into a factory in Bangladesh, are particularly embarrassing given that Lululemon just recently launched a partnership with the United Nations to reduce stress levels and promote the mental health of aid workers.
The claims relate to a factory owned by Youngone Corporation, a South Korean headquartered business. Youngone began manufacturing sportswear and down jackets in Seongnam, South Korea and has since grown to become a leading global manufacturer of outdoor apparel, footwear and gear. It owns production facilities in Bangladesh, Vietnam, China and El Salvador. Interestingly, Adidas also lists Youngone’s Chittagong manufacturing facility in Bangladesh as a supplier.
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