Today we’d like to introduce you to Nikki Koenig.
Nikki, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I am a serial social entrepreneur whose mission is to help make this world a more compassionate and happy place for all living beings. I founded my mindful marketing agency, NiKo Creative in 2000 when I was a high school student; designing logos, t-shirts, posters, and various marketing materials for non-profits and businesses. 18 years later, the agency still serves the same mission to help purpose-driven non-profits, businesses, and individuals achieve their higher cause for people, profit, and planet.
In 2003, while a student at Southern Methodist University’s Meadows School of Arts, I founded Cykochik Custom Handbags, an international award-winning compassionate company recognized for our creative, cruelty-free, eco-friendly, and custom-made vegan handbags in Dallas, TX. In 2013, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals)’s President, Ingrid E. Newkirk personally awarded Cykochik the Compassionate Business Award for “establishing high ethical standards in order to provide conscious consumers with cruelty-free, environmentally friendly options”. Also in 2013, Cykochik raised over $10K on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter, to launch our 10 Year Anniversary Collection and also for me to take the leap and leave my corporate marketing career to pursue my businesses full-time.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
The entrepreneurial road isn’t always smooth, there are many bumps along the way – especially for an independent, local, and ethical company like Cykochik.
Our challenge in the beginning, was having enough capital to purchase the equipment and materials needed to make a collection. We needed special handbag sewing machines and also rare eco-friendly/cruelty-free materials. Also finding skilled artisans who are trained in making handbags in Dallas was a challenge, but over time we’ve trained artisans to craft handbags in our studio. We grew slowly and conscientiously over 15 years with the financial support of our fans worldwide!
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Cykochik Custom Handbags and NiKo Creative – what should we know?
Cykochik Custom Handbags is internationally recognized for our creative, cruelty-free, eco-friendly, and custom-made vegan handbags, accessories, and apparel, made in the USA since 2003. We believe in our 3 core values of Creativity, Craftsmanship, and Community. Which is why we collaborate with artists, artisans, and non-profits around the world to achieve our vision of a more compassionate, sustainable, and happy world for all living beings. A world where animals are not exploited for fashion, where workers earn fair wages and natural resources are protected. We are most proud of our mission and relentless pursuit to create fabulous fashion to benefit people, animals, and our planet.
NiKo Creative is a boutique creative marketing agency practicing Mindful Marketing, by helping individuals/businesses/non-profits achieve their triple bottom line for people, profit, and planet.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
My mom taught me how to sew when I was 7 and has supported all of my creative endeavors ever since. She helped me start Cykochik Custom Handbags and is our “secret sauce”! Cykochik belongs to the community of family, friends, and fans worldwide that have supported it since the beginning.
- Website: www.Custom-Handbags.com, www.NiKoCreative.com
- Instagram: @Cykochik @NikoCreative
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cykochik https://www.facebook.com/NikoCreative
- Other: Cykochik Custom Handbags
Cykochik Custom Handbags