Serendipity + Guts = BBP (Best Business Partners)


Have you ever met someone for the first time but felt like maybe you had been best friends in a past life? This has really only happened to me twice in my life and meeting Kena has definitely been one of those times. I moved to Toronto four years ago, and I randomly stumbled upon a blog—Kena’s blog (In Life and In Fashion). I actually have no idea how I found it, and in hindsight, it seems serendipitous. But as someone who has always been interested in retail and in fashion, I loved the things she chose and the topics that she wrote about.  Most of all, I loved her voice. She spoke in a fresh and uplifting way, and I intuitively knew she was someone I wanted to meet. It wasn’t until I was on my first maternity leave from work, that I finally managed to build up the courage to cold email her and ask her out for a coffee.  Seriously, people, check out this picture from her blog.  She looks like a fashion model.  Why would this woman give me the time of day?

Luckily, she agreed to meet.  In broad daylight, of course.  And it was over many more coffee dates that we realized that we were somehow fated to meet, that we had a creative and entrepreneurial spark that we were both craving to ignite and more importantly, that we were destined to create something together we felt passionate about!

My initial gut reaction since our first meeting was dead on.  I can say without a doubt that Kena is more than just a business partner—she’s a true friend and someone who I have an incredible amount of respect for, and it couldn’t feel more natural or more organic for BRIKA to have come to life in this way!


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  • Lisa Parks on

    Hi Jen & Kena,
    Jen, it’s Lisa Parks from Right To Play. Johann told me about your new venture. I LOVE IT!!! Kena, your blog is so inspirational. I felt truly uplifted after reading through several posts.

    I really like the self-intros at the top of your site and felt an immediate connection. I love the concept. Great name and font and colors – it’s absolutley alluring. Before RTP, my business partner and I designed handbags, clutches, and other accessories. Amy, my former partner, and dear friend, is still designing. She splits her time between Marsielles and Bali. When you start your artisans features/online shopping, I’d love to provide an intro. Jen, will you be in NY for the gala? I’ll be there and perhaps we can chat. This is such an excellent chapter esp. as a mom of two. I love this story! (Plus, I feel a little extra hometown pride as I grew up near Mt. Pleasant and Inglewood and all my childhood memories are wrapped up there from Center Island as a tot to jaunts to Courage My Love in K Market as a teen (and still now:))

    Congrats Jen and Kena!!!!!

  • kena on

    Thanks Bill! You provided so much encouragement right at the beginning! :)

  • Bill on

    Great story! Congratulations on your partnership – looking forward to the launch of Brika!

  • jennifer on

    Thanks, Lisa! We’re so glad you love our concept, and we can’t wait to show you what we have in store. I also love your back story, and I had no idea you were such a creative person, too! I’ll definitely be in NY so let’s catch up properly! -Jen

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