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The Fabulous 5 : Founders of AWKN

by Staff GBAF Publications Ltd
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L to R: Soom Kim, Tess Kim, Nina Song, Lucy Coddington, and Amabel Clark

Fueled by a desire to bring people together again for better nights out and brighter mornings after the lockdown of 2020, the seed for AWKN was planted by friends, Amabel Clark, Lucy Coddington, Nina Song, and sisters Soom and Tess Kim.

Having experienced the power of traditional Korean hangover remedies and the growth of the K-wellness movement, the founders embarked on a journey to combine the best of Eastern traditions and Western science. The founders realised that they shared a common struggle of the ‘Asian Flush’’ during social occasions, making them dread drinking due to the embarrassment. Hangover prevention products are popular throughout Asia and it also helps with ‘Asian Flush’. These supplements are also quickly growing in the West. 

Seizing the chance to fill a gap in the Western market, the founders set out to create a product that can be routinely incorporated into a healthy lifestyle, allowing people to balance nights out with a shorter recovery time. 

With a variety of specialist backgrounds across finance, business, chemical engineering and graphic design, the founders pooled their talents and expertise into their new brand,  ensuring that it included only the highest quality, natural ingredients.  

This resulted in the creation of AWKN, a hangover prevention supplement that would mitigate the effects of alcohol. The power-packed blend is packaged into convenient sachets for easy consumption before and during a night out. After months of intensive research with one of the top health and functional food product manufacturers in Korea, various iterations of the product, and rigorous testing, AWKN’s eponymous product was born. All this was achieved by the founders while they worked in full time jobs. 

Here’s a short insight into each of the founders and their background:

Amabel Clark, 28 – Born into a family of doctors, the British-Malaysian Amabel Clark grew up with an appreciation for the power of both eastern and western medicine. With a Masters in Chemical Engineering from Cambridge University, Amabel oversees sales at AWKN. Working in finance in London, she juggles her daily office grind alongside AWKN. Her favourite drink is an Aperol Spritz.

Lucy Coddington, 34 – Lucy’s ‘responsibly irresponsible’ mantra sees her balancing her playtime – skydiving in Namibia, anyone? – with a job in investments and asset management. While she has a background in chemical engineering and finance, she enjoys finding brand and content partnerships. Having grown up in Australia and worked in several countries including Korea, she is thrilled to have discovered the K-secret to partying all night and working all day. Her favourite drink is Vodka Soda Lime or Mezcal. 

Nina Song, 30 – Growing up in both Germany and China, Nina’s diverse work experience extends to the corporate world where she held roles in finance and start-ups, and even a brief stint as a bouncer in a club in Shanghai. Her education in business from both Eastern and Western universities come in handy at AWKN, as she applies her knowledge to handling operations and logistics at AWKN. Her favourite drink is ‘gin + anything’ and beer.

Soom Kim, 29 Born in Korea, Soom grew up in Seoul, New York, Philadelphia and is currently based in Berlin as an Art Director. Having worked in branding and marketing for many years, Soom created and directed the brand image for AWKN. Aside from design, she also oversees brand management and customer relations for AWKN, and brings her know-how on Korean hangover remedies to the table. Her favourite drink is a gin and tonic with lime, hold the cucumbers.

Tess Kim, 33 – Working in tech and start-up in Seoul and New York, Tess soon discovered that corporate functions, company events and MBA parties all intersected in one area – a lot of socialising with a drink in hand. Her knowledge of Korean hangover remedies helped her successfully juggle both her professional and social life and she wanted to share these secrets outside of Korea. She previously worked in business development and sales in WeWork and was the first employee at Coupang, Korea’s equivalent of Amazon. She has an MBA from The Wharton School specialising in Entrepreneurial Management, and combining her tech and startup experience, Tess works full-time on AWKN driving manufacturing and general management from her home in Monaco. Her favourite drinks are wine, negronis and vodka soda.