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Meet Inga Atelier's Inga Gubeka (one of Africa’s most promising entrepreneurs)

Written by: Kabous le Roux

I’ve got this vision… I want to become one of the biggest luxury brands to come out of Africa.

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

Even if we’re making money… it frustrates me… I’m not the kind of guy that sits in the boardroom for very long… I’m a maker!

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

You’ll pay, on average, about R1300 for an Inga Atelier bag… it goes up to R11 000…

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

Inga Gubeka, born in the Eastern Cape and raised in Durban, always imagined himself in advertising or design.

He studied interior design at the then Durban University of Technology, and started Indalo Décor, his first entrepreneurial venture, in 2013 in Cape Town.

He used wood to make all kinds of unique products such as clutches, bags and backpacks.

In 2015 Glenfiddich named a premium single malt whisky – worth R80 000 - after Gubeka, who designed the bottle.

Gubeka left Indalo Décor, after differences in opinion he had with his partners with regards to the future direction of the company.

He then re-entered the market with his new “lifestyle brand” Inga Atelier, which makes wooden and leather bags.

Gubeka is, according to Forbes, one of Africa’s most promising young entrepreneurs.

Refilwe Moloto (in for Bruce Whitfield on The Money Show) interviewed Gubeka for the weekly “ShapeShifter” feature.

Listen to the interview in the audio below (and/or scroll down for more quotes from it).

We’re going for the malls where all the luxury brands are.

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

A lot of customers… want things personalised… we don’t charge extra for it…

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

We look at having about 20 employees by the end of the year.

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

We’re looking at opening at the Waterfront [in Cape Town].

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

In South Africa we’re still very behind when it comes to online shopping… that’s why you must balance online with offline… We have an online store, and we’re on Instagram…

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

My clientele is mostly very high end… it’s people who know what they want… they tell me what they want… they want to be treated differently… they even want coffee before they spend… it’s a very experiential relationship…

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

There’s a big difference between quality foot traffic and quantity foot traffic.

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

As a creative, you must be in control…

Inga Gubeka, Inga Atelier

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This article first appeared on 702 : Meet Inga Atelier's Inga Gubeka (one of Africa’s most promising entrepreneurs)




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