Profile of CONTIGO´s partner Papital

Supply chain

Trading Partner: Papital Gallery, Cooperative
Function: Service Provider for CONTIGO
Structure: Affiliated production groups
Tradeway: Direct import CONTIGO


Handmade, ornamental tile jewellery


Tehran, Iran – distance to Europe: 3,700km

Founded in 2016


  • Fatemeh Zare´ie, an art student from Tehran begins designing jewellery inspired by ornamental tile designs of Iranian mosques
  • 2016: Together with 4 other friends she founds the artist collective Papital Gallery (Papital means ivy). The members share a fascination for Iranian, centuries-old ornamental and tile art. With their company they want to connect this traditional craft with the modern age
  • 2018: The Iranian Yunes Sadat Fakhr, who lives in Göttingen/Germany, introduces CONTIGO to the jewellery and the backgrounds. Yunes supports Papital in customer acquisition, gaining access to the international market, the cooperation with CONTIGO starts
  • 2018: Co-founder Fatemeh Zare´ie leaves Tehran for family reasons, the other members continue her artistic work
  • 2019: Despite difficult circumstances (US trade embargo means difficulties with export, import and money transfer) the first delivery from Tehran arrives in Göttingen
  • 2020: Papital Gallery is registered as a limited liability company and plans to establish its own workshop building

Cooperation with CONTIGO since 2018

Structure of the company

Number of employees:

  • 5 permanent employees (3 women, 2men)
    • Production manager: Saeed Aghaee
    • Design: Shiwa Masoudian
    • Producer training: Mehrnoosh Masoudian
    • Accounting: Jafar Mortazavi
    • Marketing and sales: Yunes Sadat
  • Cooperation with the non-profit organisation Ghalb-e Sefid (translated: White Heart) from central Tehran: women are trained by Papital in the production and decoration of the tiles
    • The earnings are an additional income
    • 6 women were employed in the production of the CONTIGO order, the production took place partly in the premises of the organisation, partly at home (depending on the work step)

Production process:

  • Tile elements are punched out of a clay and stone mass
  • Drying of the tile elements in the sun (10-12 days)
  • Surfaces are sanded smooth and even with sandpaper
  • Depending on shape and size, sections are selected from the ornaments of the mosques and scaled accordingly
  • Images are printed on special transfer paper, which is then manually glued to the small tile elements
  • Final clear coat sealing (front and back), protection against dust and moisture
  • Assembling and finishing the earrings, earhangers and necklaces


  • Exports (20%) to Turkey, UAE, Canada and Germany


  • To continue the existence of arts and crafts in Iran
  • To commit for more equality between women and men

Special features

  • Cooperation with local, non-profit organisations that take care of socially and financially disadvantaged women (single mothers and women from low-income families)
  • Papital provides free workshops and training for them in jewellery production:
    • First in central Tehran, now also extended to other districts of Tehran
    • Papital encourages women to develop their own (jewellery) production independently of Papital and supports them in marketing and sales

Why does CONTIGO work with Papital: 
Admiration for the young, ambitious company and the commitment to the preservation of handicrafts in Iran. CONTIGO wants to support Papital in achieving access to the international market despite the adverse situation Iran finds itself in.


Fairtrade classification

FTP= Fairtrade in Progress, new trade relation


Fairtrade aspects

Papital complies with the following Fairtrade Principles:

No child labour

No discrimination

No discrimination due to gender, disability, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, political orientation, or infection with HIV

Fair wages

  • Minimum wage in Iran: US$ 110/month
  • Employees from Papital receive a monthly salary which consists partly of a fixed salary and partly of pieces rates
    • The salary is an additional income for the employees, as the order situation is still insufficient (no full-time employment possible)
  • External workers in production receive an agreed piece rate. This income is an additional income for the women
  • Monthly cash payment or transfer to bank account

Humane working conditions

Working hours:

Employees and artisans organise the time and work by themselves:

  • 4-5 hours/day
  • Regular  breaks
  • 6 days/week

Social benefits:

Papital pays into the health insurance scheme for permanent employees

Educational opportunities:

  • see above under “Special features”

Occupational safety:

  • All safety standards are met



  • Payroll is available
  • Pay slips are available
  • SAR (Self Assessment Report) was duly submitted to CONTIGO



  • Several visits by Yunes to the CONTIGO headquarters in Göttingen, Germany


Country information

See Encyclopaedia Britannica: Iran

Author: Janina Lange on 28. January 2021

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