Coffee shops are vibrant social ecosytems within communities. In Victoria, think Habit, Discovery, Koffi and Caffe Fantastico where locals go to relax, work and connect.
Now think about it from a traveler’s perspective—she finds a lively coffee joint, walks in, orders a hot drink and sits in the middle of this bubbling social scene … by herself.
Nok Nok CAFE, a Montreal-based tech start-up, is looking to change this experience by bringing the sharing economy to coffee and allowing anyone to create their own coffee bar at home, even in Victoria.
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But don’t call Nok Nok the espresso version of Airbnb or Uber, says Mathieu Halle, the company’s VP of Digital Business. The vision isn’t to sell coffee in a different way, it’s about repackaging how travelers and locals alike experience coffee.
“We want to emphasize this isn’t a transaction focused on convenience,” Halle says. “Nok Nok CAFE is about creating social connections with people you wouldn’t have met otherwise.”
Nok Nok isn’t entirely distinct from Uber and Airbnb. What it does have in common with those massively successful brands is the two-sided market place: a business model based on connecting hosts, who have something valuable to share, with customers, who want that shareable something.
In the Nok Nok model, hosts populate a profile page with their location, interests, hot-drink menu (with pricing) and availability. Guests use the Nok Nok CAFE app to search for nearby hosts, view their profiles and menus, and make reservations. Payments are transferred via a credit system within the platform.
“People like the possibility of doing something new and meeting someone new on demand,” says Halle. “Coffee is something we all have on the kitchen table, why not share it and enjoy a new experience in the process?”
Nok Nok CAFE has been around for about a year and the host population is growing. Already, people are registered in Quebec, Ontario and B.C. and the company is seeing interest from the U.S., Mexico and Brazil.
To learn more and register as a host in Victoria, visit: www.noknokcafe.com.