Creators of Toronto | Peace Collective

By John Yoo October 30, 2015
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I sat down with Founder of Peace Collective, Yanal to talk about the incredible growth this iconic Toronto lifestyle brand has had over the past year.  Needless to say, you should grab a PC sweater for Fall.

What is your background? 

My degree is in biomedicine at Waterloo, and ironically enough wasn’t involved with the entrepreneurial scene during my time there.  I worked at Salesforce for a year prior to taking Peace Collective full-time.

Peace Collective tshirt shot

What is Peace Collective?

Peace Collective is a platform that allows Torontonians and Canadians to show pride on where they are from, whilst giving back to a local community cause.  We are partnered with Breakfast for learning which is the biggest provider of school meals in Canada.  Surprising enough, Canada is the only developed country that doesn’t have a government sponsored meal program, which is how we came around to contributing to this cause.

Toronto vs Everybody tshirt from peace collective

How did Peace Collective Start?

It started with a simple idea.  2 Years ago, the Raptors made the playoffs and my friends and myself wanted to make shirts to wear to the games.  From there, people noticed them and asked where and how to get them.  I recognized this as an opportunity and found myself slowly contributing piece by piece to this business.

visual shot of peace collectives gear

Do you have a favourite piece from your collection?

The Canadian Built Jersey

Toronto made, peace collective shirt featuring the canadian built

Who design’s the collections?

I do!

What did you find worked best for you in terms of growth?

Bautista, when he reached out to us and Instagrammed that photo, we did half a year of sales in 1 week.  Our collaboration with Lululemon is also huge.

Jose bautista repping the toronto vs Everybody shirt after the Blue Jays win ALS east

What is the coolest thing that’s happened for Peace Collective?

Gonna mention it again, but definitely Bautista and Lululemon.  When they reached out to us, we were shocked but also incredibly excited to collaborate with such iconic figures in Canada.

Where do you see this going?

We want to be a recognizable Canadian brand, just like Roots or Lululemon.  We want Peace Collective to be a familiar name throughout the country and anybody who is a Canadian will want to rep our collection proudly.

Toronto vs Everybody and Home is Toronto

Top 3 tips for growing your e-commerce business

  1. Social Media, this is literally how we blew up.  Without Instagram we wouldn’t have as strong of a following.  I personally don’t believe in spending funds on social ads and would find myself trying other growth hacks to gain a following.
  2. Find Influencers.  Going on my previous statement of finding other growth hacks, finding influencers was huge for us.  We would find ideal people to represent our brand, and connect with likeminded people with a large existing following.
  3. Have a killer website.  A lot of the time you can have a great product, but if you have a distracting or inefficient site, you will disconnect with your customers.

What’s next for Peace Collective?

We just released our headwear collection and in the midst of collaborating with other brands and Toronto Sports Teams.

Peace collectives headgear is now up

How can people reach you?

Social Media!

– Instagram | Peace Collective

– Facebook | Peace Collective

– Website | http://www.peace-collective.com/