Tag: business

Hot Seat: The Good Hair Club


Good hair…hmm.. two simple words that have caused controversy on social media in recent times. But what is good hair?!

You can define it however you want; I think it starts with healthy hair, says Oyin, Founder of The Good Hair Club (TGHC). In the black hair community, unfortunately it’s still defined as having a specific (looser) curl pattern, but perceptions are changing with this latest natural hair movement.

natural hair, British brands
Oyin – Founder of TGHC @Goodhairclubuk

 

What is TGHC?

An online platform with (at the moment) independent British hair care brands, that compliment natural hair. TGHC is about being good to yourself, your hair and the world – while defining beauty on your own terms.

Why was TGHC started?

From March 2015 I lived in Nigeria for a while and decided to shave my hair off. It was just too hot! I came back to London, and chose not to relax my hair again.  When my hair was relaxed I didn’t think about the damage these chemicals could cause or even considered how to look after my hair properly.

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What was it like for you looking for natural hair products?

I found so many amazing (independent) brands catering for natural hair. However, they weren’t always easy to find, as they don’t always have the distribution channels to reach customers.

We don’t have to settle for products which damage our hair and scalp!

 

When was TGHC launched?

June 2016, with a photography exhibition showcasing the diversity of black women. Prior to launch I did a lot of research, speaking to friends and family about where TGHC could add value in the market place.

Do you think the UK natural hair market is growing?

Yes! Social media has provided black beauty bloggers/vloggers the opportunity to create a fun space for tools/advice; and visual evidence of what can be achieved with natural afro/curly hair.

There is proof that natural hair isn’t IMPOSSIBLE to maintain. Women are wearing their natural hair with pride.

How do you decide which brands to feature on TGHC?

Along with looking at brand reviews, I talk to the brand owners to understand if their values are in line with the TGHC ethos. I’m not limited to British brands, but this is where I’m starting.

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A large proportion of black haircare businesses in the UK are owned by Asian or Middle Eastern men, why do you think this is?

I don’t know. It’s the same in America. Black people need to empower and support each other and build our own establishments. When I went natural and visited these shops, I realised that we settle for an experience that isn’t about us (even though we are the main consumers). I’m a black woman and believe I have a better idea of black beauty needs, compared to an Asian man.

I want to create an experience that is fun, exciting, fashionable and beauty-led.

Most popular products on TGHC?

Moisture is key for healthy hair, so conditioners are popular, especially with the rise of co-washing. Soap bars and oils are also near the top of the list.

Autumn is upon us, any product recommendations?

I recommend them all! It’s about finding what works for your hair type. The natural hair journey is an individual one. Products used in colder months may be different from what you use in the summer.

Exciting developments we can look out for?

I’ve got an international project coming in 2017; I won’t say much at the moment, but watch this space. I’m also planning on bringing more amazing brands to TGHC.

Any natural hair inspirations?

Of course! Solange is the embodiment of the care free black girl. Lupita Nyong’o has challenged western beauty ideas. Most importantly, both have fun with their hair.

Solange scored her first #1 Album (A Seat at the Table) a few weeks ago.

 

Good hair, don’t care! You can check out TGHC to find out more.

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A first: Made in Ghana Cars


Kantanka cars made in Ghana. Yes that’s right. An African company manufacturing cars in Africa. The name ‘Kantanka’ doesn’t roll off the tongue like BMW, Toyota, and Mercedes, which is understandable. These brands have been driven for decades all over the world – including in Africa. So can the new kid on the block make a dent in the tough exterior of the global automobile industry from a corner in West Africa?

According to the Africa Report, inflation in Ghana was around 18.5% in February 2016. Unsurprisingly the Bank of Ghana is part of an IMF programme on job creation and economic growth. For developing countries to move up the development index, home grown businesses, whether it be manufacturing, agriculture or services, are key.

The road to production has been long, with inception of Kantanka cars starting in the 1970’s. The Brain child of Kwadwo Safo, Kantanka cars are being rolled onto public roads in Ghana by his son, CEO Kwadwo Safo Jr, who is determined to make Kantanka a household name.

Unfortunately, the $18,000 to $35,000 price tag maybe out of reach for the average Ghanaian, but some businesses and the Ghana police service have started to use the cars. In a country which imports more foreign goods than it should, due to the fledging manufacturing industry in Ghana and the perception that foreign products are ‘better’ than domestic products, Kantanka has a lot of (PR) work to do!  Also, at the moment the Kantanka factory can only produce around 100 cars a month.

Some Ghanaians who can afford it are willing to buy homemade cars BUT want solid evidence that the cars can match up to international cars.

cars in Ghana, African cars
Safo Jr. keen to make his dad’s dream a reality on Ghanaian roads.

Kantanka want the “Made in Ghana” tag to become a slogan of pride and has developed cars for the domestic market. It is the first car brand to be designed and manufactured in Ghana.

Ghanaians are employed at the Safo Technology Research Centre located between Gomoa Mpota and Gomoa Asebu, just outside the capital Accra. Apparently, the research centre is located on part of the land acquired by Ghana’s first president, Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. The wood from the dashboard is sourced from Ghanaian forests and the leather seats are manufactured in Ghana’s second city – Kumasi.

Safo Jr. has big ambitions for the Kantanka brand and has already used African movie and music stars to test the cars. These African cars are for sale, watch this space.

Check out the video here and see the cars in action.

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Good African Coffee


Empowering Ugandan farmers, without charity or handouts – An entrepreneur’s dream has become a reality.

The founder and CEO, economist Andrew Rugasira , says it’s about trade, not aid – Africa doesn’t need handouts.

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