- Website: www.shopsoko.com
- Sector: Consumer Services
- Country of operations: Kenya
Shop Soko is a jewellery supply chain that’s leveraging the power of mobile technology to match thousands of independent artisan entrepreneurs in developing markets with real-time global demand. In the process, the company is helping to transform these entrepreneurs’ business prospects. The company says that with minimal inventory, waste or overheads, artisan producers can earn more selling through its supply chain – all they need is a smartphone that allows them to connect directly to Shop Soko and its customers in 35 countries around the world.
“Soko is changing the fashion industry for good, transforming the way artisans produce, and retailers source, from emerging markets,” explains Co-founder and CEO Ella Peinovich. “Using its proprietary mobile technology, Soko coordinates more than 2,100 independent artisans into a distributed production model or ‘virtual factory’. It aims to revolutionise the global supply chain to make it more inclusive, distributed and ethical.”
“Soko provides pioneers in the fashion industry with an ethical alternative without sacrificing style or affordability”
The company is developing as a lifestyle brand and helping to meet demand from consumers who want good quality at a fair price. It also acts as a competitive sourcing option for global brands.
As a result, Shop Soko is transforming ethical fashion from a niche player in the industry to a more mainstream offering. “The current fashion supply chain is founded on broken standards around production and distribution, often doing harm to the planet and people,” says Ella. “Soko has re-envisioned the centralised model of mass manufacturing into a distributed network of independent artisans who can define the terms of their trade. It provides pioneers in the fashion industry with an ethical alternative to fast fashion without sacrificing style or affordability.”
- 2,100 independent artisans make up Shop Soko’s ‘virtual factory’ of jewellery makers
Having started out sourcing jewellery from east Africa, the company is now diversifying and looking to work with developing markets around the world. Ella says: “Soko aims to grow from the 2,100 artisans today in east Africa to more than 25,000 globally, supporting over 100,000 dependents, in the next five years."