Inside the Workshop
We're Global - But It's About Kenya.
With a robust artisan economy, multigenerational ingenuity, deep cultural roots and impressive technical skill, there is an incredible amount of talent and beauty in Kenya.
The artisan craft sector is the second-largest employer in the developing world, yet it is also one of the most marginalized. Limited to local sales, millions of talented artisans are trapped in micro-economies, unable to earn enough to support their families.
With an unbounded entrepreneurial spirit and a willingness to try new things, Kenyans are ready and well-positioned to disrupt old patterns of poor infrastructure and economic hardship.
Through digital banking instead of a cash economy, plus accessibility to cell phones, because the entire economy is mobile-driven, we created a simple, commercially viable way to connect local artisans with the international market and industry. We’ve coined this system — a virtual factory.
What is a Virtual Factory?
A virtual factory is a proprietary mobile application developed to connect our artisan network.
Our supply chain innovation uses mobile phones to connect independent artisan entrepreneurs directly to our team and global customers, which allows artisans to receive orders and payment.
Our virtual factory standardizes manufacturing in an informal environment and provides artisan leaders with the tools and resources to preserve and improve heritage techniques to scale.
Artisans working with SOKO earn nearly 5X more than an average artisan workshop.