A winged horse, an upright bar and three simple letters are what identifies the outstanding brand that uses african print and images on any object. We met its founder and had a very fun time discussing with her—trust me. Let’s discover NOK!
Actually, the exact question we first asked her was “Tell us a bit about who Bella Agossou is?” Then, she explained to us how difficult it is for her to talk about herself and ended with this one: “…Well, Bella Agossou it’s me”. We all burst into laughter, seriously ! As you have guessed it by now, Bella Agossou is the founder of NOK. An internationally renowned Beninese-Spain-based actress, she also happens to be a blogger at times. Her open mind is the creative machine which, back in 2016, gave birth to this three-letter brand that she named NOK.
First, Nok is the name she (Bella) gave to the main character of a novel she is crafting with passion. It has been the easiest brand name idea at hand for her. She even shared with us the story of her unpublished book and it’s exciting! We won’t tell you, of course; don’t ask us to betray the secret J. All we can say now is that the main character’s name might be changed, since everyone already knows Nok.
Secondly, NOK is the name of a great ancient African dynasty who disappeared in history, poorly documented, little talked about. NOK culture according to Wikipedia “is an early Iron Age population whose material remains are named after the Ham village of Nok in Kaduna State of Nigeria, where their famous terracotta sculptures were first discovered in 1928. The Nok Culture appeared in northern Nigeria around 1000 BC and vanished under unknown circumstances around 500 AD, thus having lasted for approximately 1,500 years.
Iron use, in smelting and forging for tools, appears in Nok culture by at least 550 BC and possibly earlier. Data from historical linguistics suggest that iron smelting was independently discovered in the region prior to 1000 BC.”
Naming her business as such is a way of rendering a posthumous homage to the dynasty.
What drew our attention to the brand is the creativeness involved in their products. The way they actually shed light on and reveal components of the African culture with various african prints. NOK basically takes common items and turn them into literally uncommon products. Their showroom displays useful objects from mugs to books tagged with African specific designs sourced out of african prints and images.
Their products are generating demand beyond Benin and the brand is planning to expand to other African countries. You can see for example a cover picture on their Facebook page announcing an upcoming branch to open in Togo.
Our final word is nothing less than a big Good luck NOK!
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