World Community Exchange

Ethical business is profitable business. We provide our discerning clientele the quality handmade products they desire while appealing to their social consciousness. World Community Exchange provides products that are produced by women artisans or provided through women owned/operated businesses.

Marketplace
World Community Exchange is considering raising capital through a Regulation Crowdfunding campaign to be conducted by Fundify Portal, LLC. We are running this “Test the Waters” campaign (branded by Fundify as a Fast Pitch Preview™) to gauge Investor interest and also determine the appropriate funding method. During this Test the Waters campaign, (1) no money or other consideration is being solicited, and if sent, will not be accepted; (2) no offer to buy the securities can be accepted and no part of the purchase price can be received until the offering statement is filed and only through Fundify's funding portal platform; and (3) a prospective purchaser's indication of interest is nonbinding.

Summary


Our vision is a world without economic disparity or oppression based on sex, gender, or sexual identity. 

Our company provides discerning, socially responsible consumers with the opportunity to purchase quality, unique art and hand crafted products knowing that the products they are purchasing adhere to fair trade practices and benefit economic equality for women world-wide

Problem

Gender Inequality in the Economy

Women constitute a majority of the poor and are often the poorest of the poor. The societal disadvantage and inequality they face because they are women shapes their experience of poverty differently from that of men, increases their vulnerability, and makes it more challenging for them to climb out of poverty.

In other words, poverty is a gendered experience.

In addition, women’s economic empowerment boosts productivity, increases economic diversification and income equality in addition to other positive development outcomes. It is estimated that gender gaps cost the economy some 15 percent of GDP.

Lack of Visibility

People who want to support women owned/operated businesses do not have a central location to find them. For example, there is no sort feature in a search in LinkedIn for that criterion.

Barriers to Entry

Artisans and craftspeople who want to sell must either:

  1. Open their own brick and mortar location;
  2. Find a consignment store or similar
  3. Pay high fees to sell on Etsy, Amazon or similar type ecommerce platform or
  4. Have enough awareness of pricing, sales, marketing and the platform or app and sell directly on Facebook, Instagram and/or Pinterest.

Artisans and craftspeople in many areas of the world do not have an easy outlet for the sale of their products to more lucrative markets. They have historically been dependent on wholesales and have not always benefited from their work in proportion to their payments.

Solution

Empowering Women Across The Globe


All products sold on WCE site are from women/owned operated businesses or created by women artisans and craftspeople.

World Community Exchange (WCE) addresses several of these issues. The economic disadvantages of women is why we chose to focus on women owned/operated businesses rather than a more global perspective of poverty.

As women, we understand that women often face multiple roadblocks to financial resources. In many societies, they function within the home as mothers and caregivers which are unpaid positions. When they do work outside the home, women’s wages still linger behind men’s, from as low as 30 percent in North Africa and the Middle east, to a high of 70 percent in East Asia and other developed countries.

This is why we’ve chosen to work with Fair Trade Organizations to ensure that the artisan is being paid a living wage for their product. We chose to place no “upfront costs” on the vendor to prevent the burden of “start-up” costs and there are no monthly fees for participation, which again keeps the money in the pockets of artisans.


According to Catherine Russell Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues, in her keynote speech on February 20, 2014 at the World Bank’s Gender at Work Report, growth in female income in Latin America and the Caribbean made a crucial contribution to both extreme and moderate poverty reduction between 2000 and 2010. If income remained flat during that decade and the labor market held constant, extreme poverty would have been 30 percent higher in 2010, had female contributions not been more [4]. So our focus on women artisans could impact the poverty level across many societies as well as globally impact world economies.

Product

What We Provide

What we provide is a virtual one-stop-shopping experience to our clientele. We also have the fair trade practices and socially conscious appeal that the fair trade stores have. In addition, we have found that by reaching out and sharing our mission and vision we have gained the support of many in the fair trade community. By working collaboratively and respectfully with this group we can grow further than if we directly competed in a traditional "cut throat" business way.

Fair Trade

World Community Exchange is dedicated to the principles of fair trade as outlined by the World Fair Trade Organization. We are applying to become members and intend to complete the process by December 2022. In the meantime we adhere to the principles in every way we can to protect the members of our team including our clientele, artisans, makers, operational team, board of directors, and investors. Unlike commodity certifiers the "WFTO Guarantee System assesses the entirety of a business, not just a specific product, ingredient, or supply chain. It includes an assessment of the enterprise's structure and business model, its operations and its supply chains." It is also an essential part of the WCE mission and vision.

Equitable commerce is profitable commerce. In direct contradiction to a common myth that hand crafted is not quality or is somehow sub-standard we seek out the best products we can find world wide. We look for beautiful products that will appeal to our discerning and socially conscious consumers while supporting the community and our planet.

An example of this type of product is:


Silvia - Recycled Tire Handbag

We work exclusively with woman owned businesses. We do not discriminate based on any race, religion, socio-economic status, color, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, or genetic information. Our women team members self-identify and we do not question that choice.

We follow the WBENC (Women's Business Enterprise National Council) model and are in the process of getting certification. Per WBENC a woman owned business is one that is "at least 51 percent owned, controlled, operated, and managed by a woman or women. This means one or more women must have unrestricted control of the business, a demonstrated management of day-to-day operations, and a proportionate investment of capital or expertise." www.wbenc.org 

Between our commitment to fair trade practices and our dedication to our mission and vision we provide opportunities for our discerning and socially conscious clientele to purchase quality goods.



In addition, we provide a sister-site which is collecting information on woman-owned and/or operated service industry organizations. These include those businesses that do not have products which can be sold on our eCommerce website. This is a value-added feature that we offer to our clientele at no additional cost. We charge the businesses a reasonable and below-market fee to help design their banner, optimize their presence and be featured on our site. If the woman owned business is economically challenged whether through being a start up, in an additional historically disenfranchised group, or in a depressed economic environment we will waive or reduce the fee.

Business Model



Each product after being cost priced fairly will be marked up to include the costs associated with the product such as shipping, import costs, taxes and additionally to cover overhead expenses as well as our profit margin. We typically markup 150% from cost but will tweak if the particular costs associated with that product are higher due to things like location (challenges involved in shipping or importation). We currently sell our products to clientele residing in North America. It is our goal to expand to the United Kingdom and throughout Europe by December 2022 and continue expediently until we can sell in all available markets.

At this point we are operating on a drop-ship model and have no initial outlay for the products on our site. However, we do provide the service of creating the collection and the necessary pieces to do so. We average approximately 10 hours of operational costs per collection added. These costs come from our existing team and therefore is already budgeted into the overhead through contractor and/or employee costs.

Competition

We have done extensive research on our obvious and not so obvious competition. What we have found is that most sites simply take money from artists and/or makers to exist on their site. Little to no support is offered. Most if not all of the technological and marketing prowess falls on the maker who usually has little to no knowledge of best practices in these areas.

In addition, most do not provide any resources to their makers on proper pricing. Some help with shipping but most do not. All take fees in various ways including up front fees to have a “sellers account” and set up fees, as well as percentage of sales. This leaves the artists and makers struggling to figure out how much they will actually earn.

By eliminating these practices we will entice the best makers to showcase their work on our site. By doing this we will provide our clientele with the best the artists and makers of the world have to offer. Our goal is to create the world’s largest for-profit market of hand crafted goods by December 2022.

There are two big names online in our industry. They are Etsy and Amazon.

Etsy:

By simply Googling Etsy online you can find just how unsatisfied both their vendors and customers are. They charge exorbitant prices, are hard to search and allow products that are not just hand crafted. It is often hard to tell makers from resellers. In addition, they are only now speaking to how they can use their site to “make a positive impact” and “push(ing) for positive change for small businesses, people, and the planet. That is vague at best. The one thing that is impressive is that they claim that Etsy is powered by 100% renewable energy although it is not evident what the specifics are behind that claim.

The biggest things outside of simply following our mission, vision and best practices in an aggressive marketing campaign that we can do to challenge Etsy are: 1. create a much more appealing site and app, and 2. Take away the quality artists and makers from their site.

Amazon Handmade:

Obviously Amazon is an eCommerce giant. However, their handmade section is an after-thought at best. They provide a custom URL to their artisans (they do not mention makers) but no virtually no support. True to their normal practice they charge step fees. They claim to not have hidden fees other than the 15% they take off the sales generated on their site. But they do not obviously discuss the costs involved in shipping, do not offer support regarding proper pricing, etc. In addition, the fees are IF the vendor is already on Amazon. If not they must commit to a monthly subscription fee.

Their biggest strength is that this handmade store is connected to Amazon. They also have some history of being socially conscious at least when it comes to climate change. But among their weaknesses, and one of the worst, is that they are trying to shove handmade into their manufactured paradigm. This is true to the point that they restrict the type of things their artisans can make.

The biggest things outside of simply following our mission, vision, and best practices in an aggressive marketing campaign that we can do to challenge Amazon are:
  1. Create a much more appealing site and app
  2. Take away the quality artists and makers from their site
  3. Continue to point out that we are not competing with Amazon but with Amazon Homemade. Our marketing needs to draw attention to the fact that this is an afterthought for Amazon and as much as possible for now David and Goliath them.

Company Vision



When Rosie Rey and Lori Hayes, the founders of World Community Exchange are asked why they are working so hard to get World Community Exchange off the ground, each of them immediately quote the company mission statement. “Our vision is a world without economic disparity or oppression based on sex, gender, or sexual identity.” To that end they are creating a sustainable and profitable system of eCommerce to increase economic independence for women world-wide.

They will quickly assert that this is not a charitable foundation. As Rosie says “what we don’t need is another charity...we just need an even playing field world-wide.” While neither of them are against charitable organizations and in fact donate a great deal of time to them, they are dedicated to providing the opportunity for women artisans and craftspeople to showcase their own work, learn best practices for pricing, entrepreneurship and representation. Lori states “I love the organizations that help people in need and in fact we work with some of them. But World Community Exchange means what we say in our tagline -Dignified Exchange. Fair Enterprise.”

The fantastic thing about World Community Exchange is that it isn’t just set up to “help.” The products they feature are wonderful for discerning consumers who shop for amazing things while being socially conscious. They are dedicated not just to their mission but the tenants of fair trade and equity throughout their business. From sourcing more team member-producers through the final sale they are consistently looking for ways to benefit their entire team. You will never hear these two talking about “our” artisans or “employees.” To them every single person involved in WCE is part of the team. No one is more or less important from Shareholders to Virtual Assistants, from the artisans to their clientele.

“It is as important to source beautiful, diverse, and creative items for our clients as it is to benefit our team in every way possible.” WCE is adding new collections consistently; they are constantly looking for new artisans to work with.

Their leadership consists of Rosie, Lori and Apple Porquerino who are the operations team as well as a board of directors. The board is comprised of Lori, Rosie, Alice Reybitz, Elisha Anderson, Jessica Perez, and Kristyle Turner.

Advancing Women’s Equality Can Add $12 Trillion to Global Growth according to McKinsey Global Institute’s 2015 report “The Power of Parity.” In that case this little team is well on their way to making a big impact.

Founders



Investor Interest
Investors Interested4
Funding Interest So Far$2,900
Offering Terms
Funding Goal$25,000 - $100,000
Security TypeSAFE
Min Investment$100
Max Investment$10,000
Valuation Cap$0
0
Closing DateFeb 3, 2022 12:38 PM PST
Investor Interest
Investors Interested4
Funding Interest So Far$2,900
Offering Terms
Funding Goal$25,000 - $100,000
Security TypeSAFE
Min Investment$100
Max Investment$10,000
Valuation Cap$0
0
Closing DateFeb 3, 2022 12:38 PM PST

Offering Terms

Funding Goal
$25,000 - $100,000
Security Type
SAFE
Min Investment
$100
Max Investment
$10,000
Valuation Cap
$0
0
Closing Date
Feb 3, 2022 3:38 PM EST

Investor Interest

Investors Interested
4
Funding Interest
$2,900