From Purpose to Profit: Exploring the value of the conscious consumer on the bottom line
From Purpose to Profit: Exploring the value of the conscious consumer on the bottom line
  • Yonathan Lapchik, CEO, SUKU
  • 승인 2019.12.19 15:38
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Yonathan Lapchik, CEO, SUKU
Yonathan Lapchik, CEO, SUKU


The storm of conscious consumerism that is breaking the corporate mould is not a singular coincidence. As technology and understanding collide, the resulting conversation has made their way from the water cooler to the boardroom. The wider wave of human consciousness has reinvigorated companies, who can no longer afford to stand alone on the corporate soapbox. Consumers are making purchasing decisions not only at a transactional level, but also based on their relationships with brands. With consumers assuming a more influential role in a company’s social responsibility directives, the trend of conscious consumerism can easily go in either direction of bane or boon. H&M, having recently launched their Conscious collection, quickly realizes just exactly how tricky adoption of the label can be, as the fast-fashion giant remains engaged in talks with Norway’s Consumer Authority to clarify and justify its claim of conscious consumerism. 

With socially responsible consumers now in vogue, companies have to do their due diligence more than ever when it comes to aligning their narrative with the fickle consumer. Even as the next phase of human consciousness has forced a critical rethink across the business sector, companies often find themselves struggling with the technological strain of meeting evolving consumer demands. Blockchain, the distributed ledger technology, has the upper hand when it comes to creating a trusted and accessible symbol of truth for the average consumer. With its core ideological tenets of transparency, immutability, and accountability, the inclusion of blockchain across the strategy document is the first step towards exploring the value of the conscious consumer in a new light. 

Sustainability is no longer a luxury

Contributing more than two-thirds of global growth, Asia Pacific continues to be the world’s fastest-growing major region. While ethical consumption is not yet fully widespread in South Korea, the movement is slowly gaining traction, especially among young people. According to a recent report by Santander, 27% of Koreans bought from companies that have an environmental policy, up 6% from the previous year. In the midst of accelerated change, companies can no longer view sustainability as a costly “nice-to-have” as the revenue incentives for sustainable business models cannot be overlooked. As it is, consumers are translating their financial footprint into an opined stance on their social, ethical and environmental identities. In response, this has rekindled interest from the once-sterile corporate landscape, and an example of this is the B Corp certification, a status certification for conscious companies. An initiative to recognize businesses who meet stringent standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose, the global outfit has established a presence across the regions of Asia, America, Europe, United Kingdom, Africa, and Australia.  Yet, the encouraging momentum so far should be viewed with cautious optimism. The reality of it is that consumers continue to face an uphill battle when it comes to taking up the call of conscious spending. In a recent report by Conscious Consumer Spending Index, over 40% of surveyed respondents pointed to the paucity of information as a major stumbling block when it came down to the identification and selection of socially responsible products and services. 

Consumers want to buy an honest brand. As shared by KMPG’s Global Retail Trends report, consumers demand a never-before level of transparency and authenticity when it comes to companies who want to unlock the wallets of their audience. At the same time, addressing the lack of information, or in certain cases, the flow of misinformation can present a daunting task for companies who do not have the technological chops to do so.  In this aspect, blockchain brings about much-needed clarity not only on the provenance of a good from its raw origins to the finished product but also as an attestation to the efficiencies that can be enjoyed when it comes to the integration of new technology to a staid industry. Carrefour, for example, has stated that the use of blockchain ledger technology to track meat, milk, and fruit from farm to the supermarket has ballooned sales of the productsThe premium that companies pay for when it comes to backing up their claims cannot be passed on to consumers, or it places the product out of reach of conscious consumerism. Blockchain has the powerful ability to make plain a brand’s intentions and actions to a positive commercial end, and in the same effect homogenizing a once-fragmented supply chain by removing ambiguity even for separate actors along the supply chain. 

The premise for purchase 

Brands today no longer exist in a vacuum. Much of their cornerstone identity depends on the relationship they hold with their audience, one that is being perennially dismantled and assembled to the tune of digital disruption. As the next generation of projects champions themselves as the agents of change, the premise for purchase is no longer captured in the dwindling value conducted over the counter. With brand equity becoming a relay of conscious meaning, innovative technologies such as blockchain are emerging as a new conduit between brand and consumer. One of the most notable examples is SUKU, a blockchain solution used by prominent companies to drive efficiency, transparency, and ultimately bring an institutional level of trust to the consumer-brand relationship.  Along with the tableau of information that can be recorded on an immutable digital ledger—brands can communicate their commitment to sustainability, and consumers can demonstrate confidence in the treatment, care, and quality of their purchases.

In a post-digital world, the only constant is one of flux. To break into the zeitgeist of the 21st century, it is not sufficient to concentrate on any one aspect of the utopian dream of conscious branding. Instead, the curious intersection of technology, opportunity, and social impact will prove pivotal for the companies who aim to turn even the harshest critic into a consumer. The new legacy being forged is principled by passion, purpose—and ultimately profitability. 

About the Author

Yonathan Lapchik, CEO, SUKU ( is a blockchain specialist with a strong business and technology background. He brings more than 12 years of experience helping Fortune 500 clients with digital transformations, M&A, tech strategy, and product implementation working for TATA Consultancy Services and Deloitte. Before joining Citizens Reserve, Yonathan held the role of Product Lead for Deloitte’s US Blockchain Lab, focusing on leading the development of blockchain-based prototypes and enterprise solutions. In alignment with the lab’s mission, Yonathan served as an in-house blockchain subject matter advisor for fellow Deloitte practitioners and clients alike. Yonathan holds an MBA from Duke University with a focus in Strategy and a BSc in Computer Science Engineering from Universidad ORT Uruguay.

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