Favorite quote: “All dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them” – Walt Disney
What is your story (tell us about yourself)?
I grew up in a small town called Heidelberg just outside of Johannesburg. I have always had big dreams for myself like starting a business or becoming a TV presenter. When I matriculated in 2012 I immediately became part of the fast paced TV and media Industry, starring in music videos and presenting shows. In 2015 I decided I wanted to fully commit to being a full-time social media influencer and in 2017 I decided that I wanted to study further in the sphere of social media and marketing. Working with makeup, beauty and fashion brands has birthed such a love and passion for beauty wellness and self care, which is when I decided to finally launch my beauty brand called Piyore (Pronounced ‘pure’) once completing my degree.
When did you start your first business and what inspired you to start?
I started my business in 2020. Completing my degree in marketing really gave me the confidence to start a brand that I know I would personally use and something that my followers would love. I have always been passionate about hair and skin care and decided this would be the focus of my business.
What is the Key Objective(s) and Vision of your business? (Has it changed overtime or is has it always been this?)
The key objective is to always give back. Piyore is a brand that wants to focus on luxury yet affordable beauty for any type of person or background. Piyore also has a fund called the ‘For Her Future Fund’ in which we donate part of our profits to helping young women pay off/for their university tuition to graduate.
What challenges did you face in your journey? What’s the biggest obstacle you had to overcome (are still overcoming)?
Doing everything on my own. Its very tough in the beginning as you are a small business and cannot afford help. Doing everything on your own can sometimes hinder productivity and conistency and that has been my biggest obstacle so far.
How did you manage to navigate your company through this period of the Covid-19 pandemic? (What business strategies/operational adjustments have you made over this period and how has it impacted your business model?)
I always focused on what I could bring to the table. I tried to look introspectively at what I needed as a consumer from other brands and mirror it into what I can provide through my own brand. I have always had such great responses from my followers that what I put out is of great quality so I’ve always tried to keep to that standard of expectation.
How do you approach networking and building partnerships in your industry?
I have been privileged enough to know many people in the beauty industry however it is always tough to try to prove yourself as a brand to the other brands around you. It hasn’t been as accepting as I thought it would be. You have to have a lot of fight in you as an entrepreneur.
Do you have (or ever had) a mentor in your journey, and do you believe it helped (if yes, in what way)?
No I have not. I would have loved to have a mentor. However, I have had a handful of people who I would constantly surround myself with who have the same visions and ideas that I do and who I can talk business plans and models to that would assist me along the way. It’s so important to surround yourself with people like that who will be able to push you towards your goals and not pull you away from it.
What is your perspective on the South African entrepreneurial landscape before and after Covid-19 pandemic? (Would you say the “new normal” context drives more or less opportunities for entrepreneurs?) How can entrepreneurial policy development aid in expanding opportunities in this new context?
There definitely has been an expansion in entrepreneurship models in the landscape. I believe that Covid-19 has pushed individuals into starting businesses just out of desperation. However as a community I feel we have attracted ourselves to wanting to help those that have just started businesses because we understand the struggles and thus could be a huge opportunity for new entrepreneurs.
In your opinion, what are the secrets to being a successful entrepreneur?
Vision, determination and consistency. Not just in entrepreneurship but in every part of life.
What advice do you have for young entrepreneurs?
Just start, keep going and don’t give up. There will always be someone out there who is looking for exactly what you have to give them. Remain humble, work hard and stay consistent.