TORONTO — Canadian public relations agency NKPR is venturing into retail, launching ShopNK – an e-commerce platform that aims to encourage “next generation” shoppers to wield their buying power responsibly.
“Nobody in p.r. has done this before,” claimed NKPR president and cofounder Natasha Koifman, whose latest venture, debuting Sept. 4 at the Toronto International Film Festival, showcases a mix of brands from beauty, fashion and entertainment that hail from collaborations with established designers and budding entrepreneurs who value philanthropy.
“Everything is limited-edition, so once it’s gone it’s gone,” Koifman told WWD, with ShopNK’s next drop slated for November.
ShopNK’s prices range from 6 to 500 Canadian dollars. Take, for example, the custom-made Grace Blazer (225 Canadian dollars), which is made from rayon, Spandex and nylon that can be shipped to consumers within seven days of their forwarding their measurements to ShopNK tailor Grace Martins.
ShopNK also will offer an exclusive capsule collection from Canadian knitwear brand Line, which includes a hoodie, crewneck sweater and blanket scarf made from an archival cashmere-modal blend for 199 Canadian dollars each.
Indeed, from a versatile 6 Canadian-dollar vase from Toronto’s ethically minded lifestyle store Thirty Six Knots to Namesake’s multipurpose leather pouch (60 Canadian dollars) and more, “the luxury here has to be accessible. That’s part of ShopNK’s mandate,” said Koifman.
Moreover, a portion of the proceeds from every purchase will go to an established charity of the buyer’s choice. ShopNK is currently aligned with five local and international organizations, including G(irls)20, a charitable movement that makes economic investments in girls; Dog Tales, a well-known Canadian dog rescue and horse sanctuary, and St. Felix Centre, which serves Toronto’s most marginalized citizens.
Also on board are Best Buddies, which encourages friendships between students and people with intellectual disabilities, and Artists for Peace and Justice, a charity headed by U.S. co-chairs Susan Sarandon and Ben Stiller that works toward empowering Haiti’s most impoverished communities.
Finally, for 100 Canadian dollars, those looking to change careers or explore philanthropy can buy 30 minutes of mentorship time with Koifman, who launched NKPR in 2002 and now operates out of Toronto, New York and Los Angeles.
“Our mentorship roster will expand. But 100 percent of this fee goes directly to a charity of the buyer’s choice. It’s a meaningful exchange for a better world,” said Koifman, who will mark ShopNK’s launch with a brick-and-mortar pop-up at NKPR’s annual IT house during TIFF.
The site will remain a mix of non-client and client finds.