Founding a Business, Sharing a Culture: Alice Bioff, Founder, Naataq Gear, and Chioma Onukwuire, Founder, Chimu Event Logo

Founding a Business, Sharing a Culture: Alice Bioff, Founder, Naataq Gear, and Chioma Onukwuire, Founder, Chimu

by Veale Institute for Entrepreneurship

Lecture Entrepreneurship Student Life Digital Event

Wed, Jan 19, 2022

4:30 PM – 5:30 PM EST (GMT-5)

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Join us on January 19th as part of the Case Western Reserve University Entrepreneurship Series for a Roundtable Discussion on cultural entrepreneurship with Alice Bioff, Founder of Naataq Gear, an outdoor gear brand designing waterproof outerwear based on the traditional Inuit Qaspeq , and Chioma Onukwuire, Founder of Chimu, a platform designed to make African fashion more accessible in the United States.

We will also be broadcasting this roundtable and future roundtables to LinkedIn Live on CWRU Veale Institute for Entrepreneurship's LinkedIn page on January 19.

This event is in partnership with the University of Alaska Anchorage Center for Economic Development.


Alice Bioff's profile photo

Alice Bioff

Alice Bioff is the founder and owner of Naataq Gear LLC, a new apparel business with a vision to share her Inuit culture through wearable art. Naataq means owl in Inupiaq and is also her daughter’s Inupiaq name. Mrs. Bioff is Inupiaq from Koyuk, Alaska, a small rural community located in Northwest Alaska. She currently lives in Nome, Alaska with her husband and four children. Mrs. Bioff has always been intrigued by business since she was a young girl. She recalls going to her Great Uncle’s log cabin in Koyuk to watch reel-to-reel movies. That entrepreneurship spirit was instilled in her at an early age. She has since successfully owned and operated a home-based daycare and a t-shirt business, both of which emphasized sharing her Inupiaq language and culture. She is excited to introduce Naataq Gear LLC. Her premier design and product is the Atmik, a one-layer hardshell jacket that is inspired by the traditional qaspeq (also known as “kuspuk”). Mrs. Bioff grew up wearing the qaspeq and is excited to introduce a water-resistant version using state-of-the-art fabric that is not only functional but beautifully constructed.

Chioma Onukwuire's profile photo

Chioma Onukwuire

Chioma founded CHIMU in order to have African fashion more accessible to the US. Growing up Nigerian, she was sick of having to take measurements and sending those measurements to her family in Nigeria to have a seamstress she didn’t know make an outfit she didn’t have a say in. She thought ‘why can’t we go to the store and just try things on and buy it if we like it’. Hence CHIMU was born. She worked with Thinkbox to design her prototypes.

Since then Chioma has worked with artisans with 7 African countries and her designs have been seen on TV, Forbes 30 under 30, and runways like NYFW. Her vision is to challenge what it’s mean to be an African fashion brand.

Currently, Chioma works as a Technical Product Manager. 

Hosted By

Veale Institute for Entrepreneurship | Website | View More Events
Co-hosted with: CWRU LaunchNet, Sears think[box], Entrepreneurship Club , Weatherhead School of Management Events

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