Well-known Canadian businesswoman Natasha Koifman is launching her unique e-commerce platform ShopNK – a curated site with a conscience where a portion of sales will be directed to certain charities and causes.
“I started it to really to encourage the next generation to wield their buying power responsibly – to remind them that simply making the mindful choice is a reward in of itself. And to build a community amongst artisans and consumers that work towards a greater good,” said Koifman, who is President of NKPR, a public relations firm based in Toronto.
“I do a lot in the cause space, in the philanthropic space, and I just thought how do we encourage the next generation to be more philanthropic while at the same time really getting to know cool artisans and new shops and have an opportunity to be exposed to new products.
“It’s really interesting actually. When we did our coming soon page, and promoted it on social media, we really got hundreds and hundreds of emails of people wanting to sign up and learn more and I was almost even surprised at the response because people seemed really hungry to be able to give back in a meaningful way while at the same time really discovering cool, new and interesting products and brands.”
Koifman curated products in three different categories under beauty, style and entertaining because it’s a big part of the NKPR brand, who it is and what it does.
“So you’re going to find things in a price range anything from $6 to $500. We’ve really curated the items,” she said.
Koifman has collaborated with a number of recognized and up-and-coming Canadian brands to offer unique/exclusive product on the shop. That includes Group Marcelle, Pusateris, LINE Knitwear, Forty Six Knots, NAMESAKE, Lise Watier and Ciao Seato to name a few.
A portion of the proceeds from every ShopNK purchase will go directly to an established charity of the buyer’s choice —one of five local and international organizations that are near and dear to Koifman. One charity will be chosen per product.
Those charities include Best Buddies, G(irls) 20, Artists for Peace and Justice, St. Felix Centre and Dog Tales Rescue and Sanctuary.
“It’s an approach that empowers our followers to think philanthropically at the personal level and give more meaning to the things they surround themselves with,” she said.
“The reason it started is because we wanted to truly educate people on the importance of giving back but at the same time recognizing that we consume goods and we are going to continue to consume them so why not consume the goods that we’re excited about and at the same time educate people about giving back.”
Koifman created NKPR in 2002 to combine her two passions: sharing stories of substance and championing important causes. Recognized as one of Canada’s most powerful and innovative women in public relations, she has been honoured with awards from the Women’s Executive Network (WXN), Notable magazine, BizBash and others. A sought-after speaker and commentator on public relations, marketing, popular culture and fashion, she writes a regular column for Huffington Post and is a frequent contributor to Entertainment Tonight Canada and Newstalk 1010 radio.
She is the President of the Board for Artists for Peace and Justice Canada and on the Board of Directors for APJ USA. She also supports various other charities working to improve the lives of others. Koifman divides her time between Toronto and New York City.
Koifman said ShopNK is committed to changing the way people engage with the shopping experience – a new extension of the NKPR brand bringing a humanitarian mindset to modern retail.
She said the curated offering is built around limited-edition pieces in the style, beauty and entertaining spaces, all sourced through coveted brand collaborations between burgeoning entrepreneurs as well as established brands.
As an extension of its mission, it is also offering limited one-on-one mentorship opportunities with Koifman with 100 per cent of the proceeds going directly to a ShopNK charity of your choice. Future sessions will tap into industry leaders and celebrities.
Koifman said the products will be available across North America as ShopNK will ship items to people’s doorstep in Canada and the United States.
“This really started because I do so much in the cause space. Our brand is known for being very philanthropic and one of the things that I noticed is that my generation considered community and giving back. And I wanted to make sure that the next generation we were able to excite them and encourage them in the same way. So that’s really the motivation,” she said.
“At the same time, I recognized that we’re all so busy. I’m a huge online shopper. I love online shopping. And it’s a great way to discover cool, interesting, new products and brands. I was able to kind of marry my three passions – cause, consumer products and how do we shine the spotlight on really cool and interesting entrepreneurs.”