How did we select them?
We asked female entrepreneurs to tell us what a business registration will do for their businesses, and had Odunayo Eweniyi (of Piggyvest) select 5 winners.
On this week’s episode of Norebased, we sit down with one of the winners of the IWD Giveaway, Tochi Egwuatu (Owner of Vendoff), as we talk about fostering sustainability in Nigeria
Tell me about yourself.
My name is Tochi Egwuatu. I’m an indigene of Anambra State and a graduate of the University of Lagos. I am professionally a product operations lead at a software company. So you can say my line of work makes me curious about people’s problems and how to build respective solutions.
Interesting! Can I draw a straight line from your profession to your brand?
Not entirely! I had a problem I experienced, and the desire to solve this problem led me to create Vendoff. So the idea itself had little to do with my profession but the decision to build a product that solves the issue does.
What’s the story behind Vendoff?
Back when I was in school, I had some difficulty accessing the kind of clothes I needed to attend certain events, so I would mainly go for the more affordable option, and you can guess the problem with this choice.
Exactly! I had an issue with fast fashion because there was a lack of uniqueness, and they were mostly not durable. I’ve always been interested in the fashion industry, but I didn’t want to do what everyone was doing. So Vendoff is a solution aimed at giving people access to sustainable fashion.
Vendoff is a platform that allows you to purchase items you love at affordable prices, and not just that; You can also sell preloved clothing items. So, in a sentence, Vendoff is a P2P product that gives people express access to clothing items they love.
Awesome! How did you start?
As a result of my interest in the fashion industry, I decided to take a different approach when I started. I had quite a number of clothes that I had worn once and may never use again either because the colour didn’t suit me or because I had outgrown them. I realized that many individuals could also resonate with this, hence, the idea for Vendoff.
So, Sustainability, but make it fashion?
This is great! How do you source the clothes?
I started with my preloved clothes and a few from my friends. But currently, the platform is open to anyone interested.
Sure! We accept clothes from interested individuals; however, we have an internal QA system to vet the clothes we receive; this way, the items we sell are not subpar. Then, we put them up for sale on our page when they are approved.
Awesome! Did you have issues with capital when you started?
Definitely! I did have an issue with capital and still do. This is because I envisioned Vendoff as a website and more than just an Instagram store.
Wow! What are the current challenges you face?
Presently, my current challenges are awareness and trust. The few people who trust Vendoff find it a bit hectic picking out and listing their products. And for me to drive awareness and reach my target market, it takes me right back to the need for funds.
Now that’s a full circle. Say you had the funds, trust, and awareness for Vendoff; where are you in the next three years?
I see Vendoff as an app/website where young people can go on and browse through clothes that they probably couldn’t access easily at affordable rates while also listing their clothes with little or no hassle.
What countries will you like to expand to?
I’ll like to expand to Ghana and South Africa because there is a ready market of young people who are open to using this service in these countries.
That means Norebase way then! *Shameless Business Plug* Norebase can help you set up your business in these two countries
LOL! Of course!
PS: Register your company in Ghana and South Africa with ease on norebase.com
What are three key things you’ll like people to know about Vendoff?
- Accessibility. We are pushing accessible fashion. You have access to different clothing brands at affordable rates and in excellent condition.
- Sustainable fashion. You can buy and sell preloved items instead of disposing of them in ways that affect the environment.
- Great Service. Vendoff is particular about ensuring that customers have a great experience from packaging, to customer issue resolution, to enquiries. We are pushing excellent service as a brand. We hope to keep that at the core of the business even when we expand.
Interesting! Congratulations once again on winning the free business registration from Norebase! What are your expectations from this move?
I’ve always wanted to do a business registration for apparent reasons. So I know it will help with credibility, so people see us as not just another business. Brand trust is another impact it will have, especially with owning a business bank account. And, of course, access to funding and loans just got easier for me.
Finally, do you have a question for Norebase or me?
Yes, So what do you think about Vendoff?
I think Vendoff is a great initiative, especially for sustainability in Nigeria. I don’t think we’ve quite hacked this sustainability thing well yet. So your brand pushing this gives it a whole new meaning. There’s been some buzz about sustainability, but not many people actually do something about it. So this is you “doing the thing.”
I’m flattered! Thank you!
So how can people be a part of this?
Anyone can reach out to us on Instagram at Vendoff.ng to buy some of our displayed items and to declutter their wardrobes as well.
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