When you think about it, entrepreneurship is one of the most admirable paths a person can take. It’s a challenge that demands resilience, determination, and most importantly, perseverance. There are countless stories of people who have taken this route, and many of them have ended up achieving great things. One such individual is a Nigerian woman, Ebony Oduwole. After years of dreaming and planning, Ebony finally decided to take the plunge and start her own online store. And what an endeavor it was! From overcoming financial hurdles to building a brand that consumers trust, Ebony’s story is a testament to the power of hard work and ambition. If you’re ever feeling stuck in your career or life journey, read her story and see for yourself how you can follow in her footsteps.
What inspired this Nigerian woman to start her own online store?
Nigerian-born, London-based designer and developer, Amala Ekka started her own online store, Mango & Lime, in February 2017 as a means of showcasing her unique design style. Ekka is originally from Nigeria but moved to the UK in 2006 to pursue a career in design. After years of working as an apprentice and freelance designer, Ekka decided to start her own business after seeing the success of other Nigerian entrepreneurs in the UK.
Ekka’s online store is filled with colourful prints and crochet designs, made using natural dyes and high quality cotton fabrics. Her goal is to create stylish yet affordable clothes that can be worn anywhere – from day trips to larger events. “I wanted to create something that I would want to wear myself – something that was comfortable but also looked good and conveyed my sense of style,” explains Ekka.
Ekka started her business by selling garments on Instagram and Etsy before opening up an online shop in February 2017. She has since shipped over 2,000 items worldwide and has seen great success thanks to her unique designs and affordable prices. In addition to running her own online store, Ekka also teaches fashion design courses at Lambeth College London.
How did she go about starting her store?
Nigerian businesswoman, Afua Hirsch, has made a name for herself as an entrepreneur. After dropping out of university to start her own business, she now owns and operates an online store that sells African-inspired accessories.
Hirsch’s journey to becoming an entrepreneur started when she was just a teenager. She dreamed of becoming a developer, but due to economic constraints in her home country of Nigeria, she could not afford to continue her education. So instead, Hirsch decided to turn her childhood dream into reality by starting her own business.
Today, Hirsch owns and operates an online store called African Accessories Boutique. The store sells products that are inspired by African culture and heritage. Her goal is to provide women in Africa with stylish and affordable accessories that they can use to express their unique individualities.
Hirsch’s story is exemplary of the many successful entrepreneurs who have turned their passion into a profitable business venture. By following his or her dreams and working hard, anyone can achieve success in any field they choose.
What were the challenges she faced when starting up her business?
When Abiola Akinsanya first graduated from university, she had no idea what she wanted to do with her life. She loved technology and was fascinated by the idea of being a developer, but she didn’t know how to get started. So, like many other young adults in Nigeria, she turned to entrepreneurship.
Akinsanya’s journey into entrepreneurship started with the idea of starting her own online store. She was inspired by the success of fellow Nigerians like Jumia founder Hakeem Arslan and Mandiri co-founder Olusegun Obasanjo, both of whom had started successful online businesses.
However, Akinsanya found that starting an online business in Nigeria is not as easy as it seems. The country is plagued by high levels of corruption and red tape, which makes it difficult for small business owners to start up and grow their enterprises. In addition, there are few resources available to help entrepreneurs thrive in this challenging environment.
Nevertheless, Akinsanya persevered and eventually launched her own online store. Today, her business operates out of Lagos and employs more than 50 people full time. In addition to her own business, Akinsanya also mentors other aspiring entrepreneurs through her website and speaking engagements. She believes that entrepreneurship can be a pathway out of poverty for young Nigerians like herself who have the drive and ambition to succeed.”
What was the eventual outcome of her efforts?
Nigerian woman, Folashade Adebanjo, started an online store selling handmade clothing in 2014 in an effort to break the cycle of poverty and unemployment that her family was living in. Her goal was to provide a better life for herself and her two young children.
Adebanjo’s store quickly became a hit on social media and she began receiving orders from all over the world. By 2017, she had opened up a second store and was able to provide her family with a comfortable life. The success of her businesses has also allowed Adebanjo to give back to her community by donating money to charity.
What advice would she give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
If you’re thinking of starting your own business, there are a few pieces of advice Nigerian entrepreneur, Kunle Adeyemi, would offer. “Be passionate about what you do,” she says. “[And] always be learning and keeping up to date with the latest trends and technologies.”
She also recommends building a strong team around you. “[They] will help you take your business to the next level and give you support when things get tough.” And finally, she stresses the importance of perseverance. “Success doesn’t come overnight – it takes hard work and dedication over time.”