Fast Company magazine
Novica Named Among 'Fastest 50' Companies in the World
Thinking Locally, Acting Globally: Roberto Milk, Andy Milk, Armenia Nercessian de Oliveira, and others - co-founders, Novica: The sons of a Peace Corps member, the Milks had a lifelong interest in artisans in developing countries. They teamed up with Armenia Nercessian, a UN human-rights officer, to create Novica.com, an online marketplace that sells the work of more than 10,000 craftspeople.
Moment of truth: "The day we came up with the idea for Novica. Everyone said it couldn't be done: simultaneously establish offices in countries all over the world, pay artists more than they have ever made before, ship purchases directly to customers worldwide -- from countries all over the world (with no U.S. warehousing), and design a patents-pending back-end system to handle all the complex logistics, international tracking, and tariffs and customs coding so customers could enjoy seamless, low cost, fast, and efficient shipping."
Results: For five years now, Novica.com has served as the leading online world style marketplace, offering thousands of limited edition and one-of-a-kind gifts and home furnishings handmade in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Novica's impact group (artisans, family members, community members) has now surpassed 50,000 people worldwide.
What's your parting tip? "Do what you love, do it better and more creatively than it has ever been done before, and do it passionately, to help people. The world will 'get it' - guaranteed!"