Thula Sindi - AfricaRise

Internationally-acclaimed fashion designer Thula Sindi is spearheading a pathway to market for design entrepreneurs in a ground-breaking joint retail initiative with various fashion designers from South Africa and the continent for a retail space in Sandton City, one of the largest and premier malls in Africa.

“Let Us Make Magic Together” is the theme for the inaugural project, and the #AfricaRiseStore will be open to the public on the 25th of October, following a media cocktail event on Thursday the 24th of October.

The AfricaRise Retail Concept Store will see Thula Sindi partnering with the BEST design creatives in Africa; to position them in the richest square mile in Africa; during the BEST shopping season in retail, to bring a unique and authentic experience to shoppers by providing a destination for African design.

In a time where the business of fashion is in dire need of innovative ideas to create new revenue streams, Thula Sindi’s AfricaRiseinitiative will cultivate an appetite for African designers to go into the brick and mortar retail space, while also drawing admirers of their brands to Sandton City.

“Even in the rocky times that the fashion industry is currently going through, this is a window of opportunity for locally-made products that are better suited for market. There are structural issues that keep black-owned design companies out of big shopping malls, and due to the fact that we are historically disadvantaged, we end up not being able to enter the spaces where the real economic action is taking place, because we don’t have some of the things which banks require; like collateral or huge amounts of money to hold two to six month deposits at the big shopping centres,” says Thula Sindi – who will serve as the official curator for AfricaRise.

His vision is to mainstream the presence of African fashion enterprises and brands within the South African retail spaces, ultimately putting designers in contact with customers and building lasting relationships.

Discerning shoppers can look forward to the convenience of purchasing items off-the-rails by top designers like; ERRE, Ephymol, IMD by Irene Makhavhu, Galago (Kenya), Loincloth & Ashes (Tanzania), Africa Your Time is Now by Papama Mtwisa, Millie Collines (Rwanda), Hamethop by Tsakani Mashaba, Mantsho by Palesa Mokubung, Maria McCloy, Taibo Bacar (Mozambique), Relevance for Men by Tshepo Mashego and Maxhosa by Laduma among other premium brands.

Each brand has also committed to hosting activations and meet and greets in the gallery-like space. Also included in the space will be selected kiddies’ items and accessories, South African Fine Art, crafts and home interiors along with a curated selection of books, DVDs and music that echo the taste of Africa.

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About Thula Sindi

Thula Sindi is the founder and the head designer of Thula Sindi Trading Enterprise consumer goods, fashion and retail. He is a graduate of the National School of the Arts in Johannesburg and studied at the London International School of Fashion (LISOF). In 2007, he had his first show in Paris since then his work has graced many runways including Hong Kong, Beijing, New York, Lagos. His participation at the Couture Fashion Week in Paris led to his nomination as one of the top 10 emerging designers in the FIMA: Afrique est la mode pan African fashion contest. The fashion designer’s work has been featured in leading magazines and websites across the globe, from Vogue online to Haute Fashion Africa. In September 2011 Thula Sindi signed a distribution deal with Edgars Stores, one of South Africa’s leading retailers. Thula Sindi operates two eponymous retail stores in Rosebank Johannesburg and Menlyn Pretoria.

For media queries and interviews, please contact:
Cassandra Gudlhuza
082 295 6097/ (011) 346 5013

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