Bridget Dube with the Momppy Mpoppy doll, which has proved popular this Christmas. Picture: Thobile Mathonsi/ANA

Pretoria - New African princess Momppy Mpoppy gave the legendary Barbie a run for her money as the favourite present this festive season.
Her creator, Maite Makgoba, had to supply more dolls to the outlets which stocked her in the past fortnight.

Makgoba, a qualified linguist who studied at the Tshwane University of Technology and works for the SA National Defence Force, said it had been tough breaking into the market in the country as there were no African kiddies characters in any retail stores until now. However, Momppy was pushing the boundaries and available in several locals stores, she said.

Makgoba said the character sold “like hot cakes” this holiday season and the demand was still growing. It was in the top 80 out of 800 African start-ups as the pioneer in the African kiddies market by 22 on Sloane.

Read: At last… a gift fit for your African princess

This is the largest start-up campus in Africa, which offers innovative small and medium-sized enterprises a complete turnkey solution to scale, from the initial idea through to commercialisation, funding opportunities and access to markets.

Makgoba said making it to the top 80 was a wonderful achievement.

“We believe the people who make it there are shapers of the continent, and being regarded among the great was an honour.”

Makgoba said Momppy was winning little girls’ hearts, and birthday celebrations were no longer themed with foreign characters, but "all things Momppy".

Makgoba, founder of Childish Trading & Manufacturing, said Momppy was not the "typical little princess who lived in a castle waiting to be saved".

“Momppy relates to little girls because she is young, fun and full of adventure. She does not wait for a prince to save her. She saves the day; she is not one who needs a male character to ensure her place in the world. She does things by herself and is the hero of the day, hero of the magical kingdom,” she said.

“Momppy rocks; she does all these looking good; fashionably good. A girl does not need to be tomboyish and tough to be a super girl hero.”

Pretoria News