Not even the chilly weather discouraged fashion enthusiasts from coming in a small army to witness the official opening and launch of Collezione Store last Thursday evening. Dressed in the latest fashion gear, both men and women who attended had a chance to mingle and see what the store which is located at Airport Junction mall, has to offer.
Owned by three Batswana: Scelo Hlope, Calistus Phologolo and un-named third party, the store is a franchise from Turkey. The original store in Turkey was established in 1986 as a fast fashion brand targeting the youth market. The Brand spans across multiple markets around the world with over 200 stores operating to date. This particular store in Botswana is the first Sub Saharan operation to be opened.
Although the target market for the store is young people, those adults who are young at heart can find an item or two for themselves as the collection of clothes in the shop contains some smart casual items. According to Hlope, the clothes are 100% manufactured in Turkey but their accessories are made elsewhere. “We are in talks with the Turkish embassy so that everything in our store can be much more global,” he said. He further said that although the prices for the clothes might appear steep, they would like to see even tertiary students being able to afford them.
Hlope added that their ultimate goal is to open a minimum of ten stores across southern Africa. It is a goal that could be realised if they work hard and luck plays in their favour. CEO of CEDA, Thabo Thamane, who was also in attendance, pledged a pre-approval facility to the owners should there be any plans of an expansion. “Luck favours a prepared mind,” he noted. Thamane noted that the owners were inspirational as they had identified an opportunity and acted on it. He added that the trio, who received financial support from CEDA, had impressed with their determination and passion. He also congratulated them for finding a good business opportunity under the current ‘difficult’ economic times and urged them to continue working as a team.