By Jody Johnson-Pettit

MarsQuest is devoted to bringing high-quality, fashionable sunglasses to customers for a reasonable price.

The Toronto-based start-up is helmed by 29-year-old Shawn Xu and 26-year-old Mars Cai.
“After being exposed to the market where some brands were selling products for a couple hundred dollars a piece and, quite frankly, not being able to afford them at that time, we set out to make a difference,” says Cai.

In 2016, the pair abandoned their banking careers to pursue their passion in entrepreneurship and create the sunglasses company.

“Our goal is to power a revolution in the sunglasses industry in which quality and style are not luxuries, but available to everyone,” says Xu. “Looking at brands like H&M and Zara, who are using their brands to make a difference in the world, we wanted to do the same.”
MarsQuest’s sunglasses are produced in the same Chinese factory that also creates shades for Ray-Ban, Dolce & Gabbana and other premium brands.

The company adds its personal touch to each step of the sunglass-making process, Cai says, including the design stage and quality control checks.

MarsQuest, which offers free shipping worldwide, is also leaving a positive mark in the world, as proceeds from their sunglasses are donated to the SickKids Foundation.
“There’s a moment when you realize that all we’re doing here at MarsQuest is amounting to more than just sales and day-to-day business activities; we’re changing lives,” says Cai.
The entrepreneurial journey has also provided Xu and Cai with some newfound wisdom.

According to the pair, “everyone can use the world as their stage, but you can find one that is yours alone. When that opportunity comes, be ready to make it count.”
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