Interviewer: What is your full name?
Ajibade: I am Prince Ajibade Adefowope Adenigbagbe also known as Fowosere.
Interviewer: What is the name of your business?
Ajibade: The name of my brand is Fowosere Apparel
Interviewer: What Products or service does your business offer?
Ajibade: Fowosere apparel is a Nigerian fashion contemporary brand that deals in the production of handmade leather wears for men, women and children. Our products include; shoes, bags, slippers, sandals, belts and accessories
Interviewer: How long have you been in the business?
Ajibade: I have been operating my business since September 2016. I invested the first 6 months into training which involved learning the art shoemaking craft.
Interviewer: Is your current business an extension of what you studied in school?
Ajibade: Although, I studied geography at Obafemi Awolowo University, where I graduated as one of the best graduating students in the class of 2015. I did not imagine myself doing anything else asides from that but life happens. I decided to pick up shoemaking skill because I’ve always been a fan of hand-made shoes.
As a student, it was very difficult for me to afford one. Hence, the desire to learn shoemaking and also to make quality shoes for people like me who loves hand-made shoes at an affordable rate. I figured out I can easily learn it while waiting to do my service. I honestly didn’t see myself veering into something that isn’t related to what I studied in school.
Interviewer: What influenced the career swap?
Ajibade: My passion for fashion and entrepreneurship influenced the career swap. I have always loved fashion right from a young age. This got me noticed in school and I won an award for Mr. Fashionista in my 3rd year. I used to buy Nike shoes and shirts from Ali Express, I also did a bit of thrift shopping for ties and socks. After purchasing those items, I package it, make it look good and sell it to my school mates who are always willing to buy my products because of the subsidized rate.
Interviewer: What are the major challenges you face in your business?
Ajibade: The major challenge I face right now is that a lot of people don’t believe in made in Nigeria products. It is a big deal because people do not trust issues made in Nigeria products which isn’t entirely their fault as some of them have been victims of scam and substandard products.
Another challenge is the importation of substandard products especially the ones that we call “designers”. Most of us know that these labels are always on the high price but will opt buy the substandard version rather than patronize made in Nigeria products.
Interviewer: Do you feel fulfilled with your current job role and has this been a rewarding path for you?
Ajibade: Seeing how I have grown over time and the privileged relationships I have developed during this course, it’s been rewarding and fulfilling for me. I gained a scholarship to study at the Pan Atlantic University, Enterprise Development Centre all because of my current job. I am also on this platform because I am an entrepreneur. I love this!!!
Interviewer: Do you have anyone who inspires you in your industry?
Ajibade: Amancio Ortega inspires me a whole lot. He is the definition of 0-100, started from nothing to be ranked the 4th richest man in the world. He is the former chairman of Zara.
Interviewer: If not making shoes, what else would you be doing?
Ajibade: If I wasn’t in fashion, I would consider interior decorations. I have a knack for colours, paintings, wall hangings and minimalist aesthetics.
Interviewer: In one sentence, tell us about your service and why people should patronize it?
Ajibade: Fowosere products are not regular. If you like comfort, luxury, and class at the best prices, this is the brand for you.