Akintade Ayomide (@midefoluwa) is an African student entrepreneur from Nigeria. She is the creative director of Myde Concept and a student of Osun State University. She is currently studying public health in the Department of Community Medicine. Starting out in 2013 to satisfy her curiosity about knowing how beautiful, handmade, art pieces are put together, Ayomide is gradually nurturing her curiosity into a growing career.
Ayomide targets a wide range of her market segments and reaches most of her customers through social media. When she is not reading or preparing for classes, Ayomide is certainly confined in the corner of her room, making a beautiful throw pillow or a comfortable footwear.
Tell us about Myde Concept and how it all began.
Myde Concept (myde_concept) deals in production and sales of foot wears, decorative and urban/traditional throw pillows and bag making. Right from my childhood I’ve always been curious about how things are put together to look nice. I love anything that has to do with arts and craft, handwoven materials and the likes of them. I started bag making in 2013. Later, I wanted to do something more, so I went into foot wear making. I started the Myde Concept brand fully in 2016.
We are working and growing the business and I would like my brand to be well known all over Nigeria and possibly reach out to Nigerians abroad in a couple of years.
You are a student entrepreneur, please tell us how you combine school and work successfully?
It’s not been easy combining work and school but God has been helping me balance them both successfully. I wake up to read late at night and work during the day after school lectures. My average day is going to school, returning home, doing some work and getting some rest. And time has been one of my major challenges. I feel I do not have enough time to combine all I have to do in a day. 24 hours a day seem too short sometimes to meet up with customers’ target. We sometimes have two or more customers who want their orders delivered on the same day, which means we have to work with speed and still maintain our quality. So TIME is the major challenge of running my business as a student entrepreneur. But I try to schedule my time so we can meet up with these targets and so I can have time for my school work but honestly, it’s not easy.
What inspires your creativity?
(She smiles) I usually say God is my creative director…It’s funny but that’s the truth. When I take a glance at someone’s feet, I tend to imagine different designs that will fit the legs properly. I also get inspired by beautiful things around me.
Do you think Nigerians have come to embrace made in Nigerian products?
Yes, I think Nigerians now believe more in ‘made in Nigeria’ products. A lot of people now embrace the designs and products that are made in Nigeria. Look at the fashion industry for example. Many of those dresses you see Nigerian celebrities wearing on red carpets are made by Nigerians. If a celebrity can rock a dress that was designed and made in Nigeria, what should stop others from patronizing made in Nigeria products? So Nigerians are really buying made in Nigerian products now and that is a good thing for us entrepreneurs and for the nation at large.
From your experience, how would you advise a freshman considering entrepreneurship?
I believe students should start a business while in school, especially at a very early stage. A year one student who has a business of her own would reach out to almost everyone in her school and everyone around where she lives and many of them would become her customer. By the time she graduates, she will not be scared of the labour market or go through the stress of job haunting because she already has her own business, in fact, by then, she would be the one creating employment opportunities for others.
If you an African student entrepreneur and you’d like to share your story with IdeaslaneAfrica, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org .