An intense brainstorming session over Greek coffee, gave birth to a Greek online store that aims to help Greek Exports by giving you the opportunity to shop for Greek products and donate 10% of the proceeds to charities in Greece.
With Christmas around the corner, it couldn’t be a better time for Doromu.com to open its online doors and come to your life at a time when Greece needs our support. That can come in many ways and Doromu – a private enterprise with a social conscience – pledges with your help to support Greece in three stages: support Greek Exports, donate 10% of the proceeds to charities in Greece and promote Greek culture.
Doromu.com started as an idea of two lifelong friends at a coffee shop in Los Angeles, after a discussion of not being able to find Greek gifts in the USA. Their American friends who have visited Greece have always mentioned all the cool stuff they were able to find in Monastiraki, and the little shops around Greece, but where are these gifts in America?
With a population of 3 million Greeks and people of Greek descent, it would only make sense for an online shop to offer Greek gifts to that population as well as all the Philellines around the world. It was that afternoon brainstorming (over coffee) that gave birth to a dream which was realized just a week ago. The two friends partnered to open an affordable but premium Greek gift store online that people can trust to do their shopping when they want to buy something Greek for themselves or their loved ones.
“It’s not about the gifts we sell, it’s about the people that our clients introduce our Greek culture to through the gifts of Doromu. Greek culture is a lifestyle of love and giving back and we believe that with our gifts people can introduce their friends and loved ones to this culture,” said Chris Kontos (photo), a partner in the newly formed company.
The operation is run from a garage in Los Angeles that the two Greek entrepreneurs modified to fit the standards of a warehouse, but it’s not keeping them from their dreams to open a real store.
“We cannot say much about our future plans but we want to start a physical store that will embrace our Greek culture of ‘philotimo’ and there will be a twist. We hope to be able to give stuff for free and foster a community around the store,” said Kontos.
The items in Doromu were handpicked in Greece in their last trip to the Mediterannean this summer.
“We met most of our vendors and they truly welcomed the idea of an affordable high-end online store based in the USA. Given the financial situation in Greece most of our vendors depend on exports,” he added.
And guess who helped the two social entrepreneurs go shopping for doilies and jewelry. “‘We had to ask our family members in Greece to help us with these kinds of things since we did not have much experience. Greek grandmothers are never wrong, so we had to trust them,” said Kontos with a smile.
“We decided not to think much and follow our instinct. We acted quickly to form a mechanism of importing from Greece, promote Greek culture through the gifts we sell while at the same time we will be giving back to the country,” he added.
In the last 2 ½ years of recession and austerity in Greece, more than 68,000 businesses, most of them small companies such as those that Doromu buys from, have closed, and many of those still operating are looking more toward export markets, including in the Diaspora.
The store offers a great variety of gifts that combine a traditional and modern taste, all made in Greece, or by Greeks. The prices range from $3.95 for an evil eye pendant and can go up to $79.95 for a 24K gold ring. At Doromu.com you will find most of the stuff you would see at a market on a Greek island or at the famous flea market of Monastiraki. Some unique pieces include Greek Jewelry inspired by Ancient Greek and Byzantine designs and sterling silver Ortodox icons decorated with Swarovski stones.
Something that distinguishes this online Greek gift store is the elegant -and uniquely designed for Doromu- gift-ready packaging offered with all purchases.
“We want to be able to help people exchange Greek gifts with the least hassle for them. So we take care from the packaging to personalized messages that they may want to include in the presents. At checkout there is a comments’ box where the buyer can tell us the message that he/she wants to include and we will happily write it on a card and add it to the package… we offer to write their message in Greek as well,” he said.