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#FashionFriday: The Business of Fashion

Opportunities, they say, can still be seen even during an economic recession. All we have to do is look toward the aphorism in the popular animation, The Lion King, as it inspired us to do “Look! Beyond what you see!”. Since the assumption of office by the present government, there has been a call for the diversification of the Nigerian economy in any way possible away from crude oil. The over-dependence on oil as we all know has had adverse effects on the nation’s economy as a result of the fall of crude oil price in the international market and our seeming over-dependence on it.

Opportunities abound in sectors such as agriculture, alternative energy sources, food processing, manufacturing, fashion and textile industries etc. The list goes on and on, but our focus here is on the fashion industry. Other countries of the world such as US, Italy, France, Spain, and China even South Africa have the fashion industry contributing a good chunk to their nations GDP. Nigeria has the potential to achieve this feat too. How? You may ask. It all starts with you and me. Nigeria loses millions of naira to forex on importing clothes. By patronizing made-in-Nigeria products, it will definitely encourage the producers to produce more. And by so doing, Nigeria will rise to be a fashion power house in the continent and the world at large.

Back to our topic of discussion today, the business of fashion. Some may ask, “How can I fit into this fashion industry?” To help provide answers to this question is what this write-up is all about. At this point I present to you the Connect Nigeria fashion business series. What is it all about? The Connect Nigeria Fashion business series is here to bring to you tips on how to be a part of the Nigerian fashion industry and consequently a part of the world fashion scene too. A journey of a thousand miles starts with a step in the right direction. If you think fashion is not for you, think again. Because the saying that you are addressed the way you dressed stands true anytime, any day. It’s time for you to look real good and make good money while doing so.

Here is a list of top categories and opportunities in the fashion industry:

  1. Fashion Design
  2. Fashion Stylist
  3. Fashion Photography
  4. Modeling
  5. MakeUp Artist
  6. Fashion Show and Pageantry Organiser.
  7. Modeling Agency/Model Manager/Model Scout
  8. Fashion Blogging/PR
  9. Fashion Advertising Agency: Magazine/TV stations/books/journalism
  10. Fashion Retail/ecommerce
  11. Fashion Show Host
  12. Fashion Event Planning
  13. Fashion Institute/School
  14. And many more…

All these categories in the fashion industry can be divided into two groups:

  1. The Design and Production
  2. The Sales and Distribution

The design and production category has grown to a reasonable extent, although more needs to be done in terms of producing for the larger population. Nigerians are among the most creative people in the world and this stems from our unique sense of rich culture and robust diversity, but the sales and distribution aspect doesn’t match the production capacity. This latter aspect, undoubtedly, is an opportunity that entrepreneurs and business-minded individuals need to take up and come up with ways of marketing these products not just to Nigerians but to the rest of the world. And there’s no better time to do this but now, the era of digital marketing. The internet has provided a whole lot of opportunities for businesses to thrive even in difficult situations.

In the next write-up, we’ll discuss how to start-out and be successful in all of these fields. ConnectNigeria.com (an innovative online platform) correspondents have had the opportunity to speak with some of the successful Nigerians in some of these fields. So stick around because you wouldn’t want to miss out on their tips to hit it big in the Nigerian fashion industry. The fashion season is about to start and there is no better time to seek-out and harness the opportunities presented by this season than now.

Thanks for your attention and please don’t forget to drop your comments, thoughts and contribution or any topic about the African fashion industry which you will like to read about. Most importantly share the love with friends and family.

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Akuma David

Akuma David is a model and fashion digital marketer who sells fashion both on the runway and online. He also has a passion for information technology and coding and derives tremendous happiness with what he does.

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