Zophila
Sikhonde

I am Zophila Sikhonde. From when I was born until I became a Barber in 2017, Inanda was my only world view. You would always find me in my room playing my guitar or repairing broken electronics and I became really good at it, also made cool stuff using these broken electronics Upon finishing matric I studied Electrical Engineering in 2012 at Elangeni College but I had to drop out in 2014 after my brother passed on and I had a child at the same year so I had to go find work to support my child and home. I hated working and wanted to create something of my own. Fortunately enough, in 2016 I had an opportunity to study hairdressing through the The Renaissance Group Int. I would buy clothes from the street and restyle them so I could look like a professional hairstylist and get clients. My mother decided to buy me a vintage singer sewing machine from the money she made selling as a streets vendor As soon as I started operating on the sewing machine, it wasn’t about just clothes anymore. I started developing this deep love for bags and it’s now a brand called IREBO BRAND As a barber I realized that Hair industry is very competitive, it’s always one and the same thing and I wanted more out of life, I wanted to be out collaborating with people and so I resigned Like any other startups we’ve had our ups and downs. In 2019 we collaborated with Castaway Love (which was the biggest highlight) through them we met Steve from The Maker Space who invited me and my friend/business partner Nkosinathi Luthuli to join the incubator so that we can become more than just a Township Brand In just one year of being at The Maker Space, I’ve acquired a lot of skills in business, design and working experience.

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