Black women taking the cosmetics industry to higher heights
Most small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) manufacturing cosmetic brands close shop due to the narrow gate to the mainstream retail stores. But Edenvinne by Gontse Kgokolo and Rearabetswe Dire bit the bullet when they went into partnership and opened their own shop to cater for people like them.
The duo said after they were turned down by numerous retail stores, the need became apparent.
Edenvinne, located at Menlyn Park Shopping Centre in Pretoria, is a beauty and grooming retail store that now sells many cosmetic South African brands.
Edenvinne currently has 45 different South African brands listed in-store and over 400
variants of products which include cosmetic products such as facial and skin care, body care, personal care, hair care, fragrances, hair grooming, male grooming products, cosmetic accessories and home accessories.
Dire, who also owns BoldxBrand, a company that manufactures perfumes, said: “We saw a need for a store that exclusively sells South African brands in the cosmetics industry because we were rejected by a number of big corporation along with many other SMME’s.
“Most SMME’s that operate in the cosmetics industry want to expand their customer reach and the best possible way to do that is to go into retail stores where consumers have the opportunity to physically interact with the products,” said Dire.
Kgokolo holds an Honours degree in Consumer Science majoring in Strategic & Business and founded KwaneleSA, a hair brand that launched Africa’s first natural hair straightener. She said most retail shops do want their products, but also expect them to change what their brands stand for.
“The industry is worth billions yet less than 10% of South African businesses are represented within this industry on a retail level. Edenvinne has created a store, which allows local brands to be easily accessible and visible in a prominent retail mall. In the past few years, there has been a noticeable increase in the opening of e-commerce stores amongst SMMEs. This increase has been proven that it is as a result of the limited retail opportunities afforded to start-ups and SMMEs. Edenvinne aims to bridge this gap and afford SMMEs that are emerging from South Africa to enter the retail space,” said Kgokolo.
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