Photo: Annalea Krebs, owner of ethicalDeal.
If you like green products, a sustainable lifestyle and saving money, Annalea Krebs has a deal for you.
The Vancouver woman is just about to launch a green coupon website called ethicalDeal that will allow subscribers to purchase products or services in their own community and save anywhere from 50 to 90 per cent off the regular price.
"I have always been passionate about promoting the green economy," said Ms. Krebs, in a telephone interview.
After studying commerce at university, she combined her business knowledge and her personal commitment to ethical consumerism to start ethicalDeal.
What is ethicalDeal?
"It is an easy way for people to discover the best green stuff to do, see or buy in their city," said Ms. Krebs.
If enough people purchase the discounted product or service online, then ethicalDeal sends them a coupon, which the customer takes to the vendor in his or her community to redeem.
Ms. Krebs chose this business model because more people are shopping online today than ever before.
Ms. Krebs says the advantage of using ethicalDeal is not only the group discount, but also the fact that the consumer does not have to spend so much time looking for the green product or service anymore. The searching is done for them.
Ms. Krebs says that her group will verify each product or service to make sure they are legitimate and eco-friendly.
They are about to launch their first green coupon website in Vancouver. Victoria, Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary and Edmonton will follow.
"It's all about group buying power," said Ms. Krebs. "We go where people want us."
The group needs between 3,000 - 5,000 subscribers in order to launch an ethicalDeal site in each community. Membership is free.
Just how big is the ethical consumer market?
Ms. Krebs says that according to a 2006 North American survey, it was valued at $US 209 million and projected to grow to more that $US 420 million by 2010.
Although Canada lags behind other countries in terms of green purchasing and environmental awareness, Ms. Krebs is delighted that Vancouver has just been certified as a fair trade city.
She acknowledges that most green products are more expensive than products that are available at discount stores, but she believes ethical consumers are willing to pay more to buy products or services that match their lifestyle.
For more information or to sign up to win a $500 green shopping spree, visit www.ethicaldeal.com.