We are striving to bring everyone on board
Okoro Nduka Emmanuel Pele, the Chief Executive Officer of Neopele Concept Ltd attended Ogene Primary School, Ndokwa East Local Government, Delta State. He went further to obtain his school certificate in 1995 and a degree in Environmental Engineering at the University of Port Harcourt in 2007. The fashion expert served in Bayelsa State between 2008 and 2009. In this interview with OpenLife’s Staff Writer, Isaac Ngumah, he talks about his success story
How did your foray into fashion start?
I was with my mum in Lagos and I actually wanted to learn the different skills before I would write Jamb and enter into the higher institution.
Then, my mum said I should go into tailoring. I refused, complaining that the whole members of my household are tailors. So I don’t want to go into tailoring again.
They registered me in an air conditioning and refrigeration company along Apapa Road in Lagos.
I was there for over a year and a half and I discovered that wasn’t my passion at all. So I had to stop and came back to Warri to meet my uncle.
My uncle is a renowned tailor and I started learning.
What impacts have you made so far through this venture?
One of the major impacts is bringing up young designers to stand on their own. Another impact is that I have been able to extend my work and designs to as many designers in Nigeria as you can count. For instance, if you go to any tailor right now in entire Nigeria, there is nobody that does not have the picture of the work I created. Young tailors don’t go back to catalogues anymore.
There are other many impacts like creating employment, contributing to the GDP and of course, making people look good.
How long have you been in the business now?
I have been in the industry for 11 years. I started in 2010.
What are your challenges in the business?
There are so many challenges in this business.
Electricity is the major one. This business thrives on power in sewing, ironing, etc.
The cost of materials is also another challenge. We try as much as possible to moderate our price so that we can retain our customers. Customers want to look good always but the cost of materials which are mostly imported is a challenge.
Where have you showcased your designs?
I started showcasing my designs in the year 2016 at the African Fashion Week. It was held at Eko Hotel and the National Theatre, Lagos.
I have also showcased at African Fashion Week London in 2017 as well as in Ghana, Ethiopia, Rwanda, France and many others.
What is your business target?
It is an Indigenous brand and we are believing God that before the next five years, our brand Neopele Concept will be a household name and will become a choice to human beings.