Entrepreneurs thrive at pop-up shops at OR Tambo International
Airports are one of the busiest places worldwide with people arriving, or departing to various destinations.
At at OR Tambo International Airport, there's a always a person who is looking for a gift for friends and family, which is why Goodbye Malaria branded merchandise saw an opportunity and seized it by selling brightly coloured shweshwe soft toys, toiletry bags, clothing, and other gifts.
The brand (Goodbye Malaria) has pop-up shops which are part of an innovative partnership with Airports Company South Africa and Goodbye Malaria. The initiative not only employs young people living near the airport, but also raises funds to fight malaria on the ground in Mozambique.
Lebo Mokoena (32) is one of the young entrepreneurs who was awarded 50% equity in the stores by Goodbye Malaria and Airports Company South Africa after her plans of studying journalism failed.
“Initially, I started off managing two carts at O.R. Tambo International Airport. I was trained on how to recruit a good team and I was even allowed to recruit my own team. I was trained on basic business administration, operations, stock management, merchandising, customer service, banking, staff scheduling, payroll and everything from the opening procedure to the closing procedure. This really enabled me to understand how to run a retail business," said Mokoena.
She also plans on taking up even bigger space at the airport.
“In the next two to three years my plan is to have my own beauty spa franchise operating at the airports, most airports currently don't have a nail bar and this a gap I plan to fill," she added.