Fashion, entrepreneurship strengthened by interaction  — Ronid MD

Fashion, entrepreneurship strengthened by interaction  — Ronid MD
Fashion, entrepreneurship strengthened by interaction  — Ronid MD

Veronica Obende, is the brain behind Ronid Ventures a house hold name in the fashion industry.

Speaking in a recent interview with Vera Anyagafu and Ngozi Okpalakunne, Veronica, a graduate of Public Administration from the University of Abuja spoke on the challenges facing entrepreneurs in the country and stressed the need for the government to ensure improved availability of power supply, raw materials, among others.

She also talked about other issues of national interest. Excerpts.

How did you get into Ronid Ventures and what is the journey like?

As a young person, I had always been fascinated about fashion and owning a business. After graduation, I worked briefly and started with buying and selling of female outfits from different countries. I ran it successfully for about four years with the dream of starting my own clothing line.

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The trendy and unique brand, Ronid Ventures, was established in 2018 and has now grown to Ronid Outfitters Limited in 2022 with a physical production, selling and training outlet of its own. We were christened “the champions corner”.

Fashion, entrepreneurship strengthened by interaction  — Ronid MD
Fashion, entrepreneurship strengthened by interaction  — Ronid MD

It all started very small with no formal training. We developed unique styles mostly from imagination and of course the internet. We have also relied on user experiences and feedback.

Did you ever had the intention of becoming a designer or you stumbled into it by accident?

As indicated earlier, l have always loved fashion, but as you know providence always plays a role in the affairs of men. My love for fashion and belief in the importance of looking good, stylish, outstanding or should I say different and trendy, while being really comfortable, drove the desire and passion for creativity and entrepreneurship in fashion.

What are the challenges and how have you been able to overcome them?

As you know doing business in Nigeria comes with numerous huge and sometimes very daunting challenges, but also opportunities for those who are daring, persistent, innovative, creative, resourceful, and we that believe in God, his mercies, blessings and favour.
Some of challenges range from need for improved power supply, availability of raw materials, costs, manpower, attitudes, policies, support safety network, encouragement and support.

However one of the critical challenges is to remain not only relevant and sought after, but also on top or even help set the pace in this very fast paced fashion industry which is dynamic and continually changing.

This we are continually pursuing by being customer focused, creative, innovative, imaginative, researching all the time, feedback, anticipatory, resourceful, creating a niche, passionate and trying to contribute to set the pace in our little corner.

You recently participated in the International Visitors Leadership Programme (IVLP), a flagship U.S. government exchange programme. How has that impacted on your brand?

This programme clearly came with positive and significant impacts. The programme which had about 20 participants from varied backgrounds and pursuits was quite enlightening and educative. It provided a platform for varied interaction, exchange of ideas and the infusion of new ideas and different ways of doing things.

It also exposed me to a new network of seasoned professionals which has been a platform for partnerships and collaborations on several projects. It has assisted in the further rejuvenation of my passion in my chosen profession leading to acquisition of new skills and methods which drives a fresh motivation to expanding my business. It has also assisted me in learning from others, expanding my imagination and creativity, thus no doubt deepening my business.

I am also an alumni and member of the Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE) from the 2022 Cohort. The 2022 Cohort had 250 women chosen from about 16,200 applicants.

This very highly intensive training programme is aimed at empowering female entrepreneurs to stand out in their field and be impactful. This programme which was very exciting, impactful, rewarding, has assisted, created and deepened networks, collaboration and partnerships.

What is unique about your brand and how acceptable has it been?

The uniqueness of my brand is in the fabric, authenticity, comfortability, versatility and style.

We utulize mainly localized ankara, which stretches and thus fits better and can better present and accentuate one’s body.

They are usually African prints with some twist of European styles, which are trendy, better fitting, unique, rare, authentic and importantly comfortable. They are available for all ages and all events. They can also be customized to fit in just about anywhere and be also very personal.

How do you balance running a successful business and a home?

Balancing work and business while sometimes slightly challenging has been super awesome as I have two encouraging men that understand and support my vision. They are my fan club and ceaseless cheerleaders.

How do you relax and where are your favourite holiday spots?

I love interacting with and meeting people. It can be invigorating and as well as relaxing. It can also facilitate networking and reaching out. It enables me to feel and see what is out there and assist tweak or/and fire my imaginations. In all these, the bedrock is going out with family and friends Partying, sightseeing and mingling.

I love the sights and sounds of Nigeria which started from my young age traversing the country with my military dad. I also visit the United States but much more of the United Kingdom.

How many partnerships have your forged with other brands?

Fashion and entrepreneurship is strengthened by interaction, friendships, collaborations and partnerships. We continually seek positively significant and impactful mutually benefiting relationships not only for business expansion, wider reach out, but also to give back. This remains a committed pursuit.

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Thus far, I have a few with Olam Creations in Lagos, Zandi Couture Port Harcourt, House of Cubes in Abuja

We also exhibited at the just concluded Africa Creative Market Global.

We have participated also in a number of pop ups and Fashion shows. As mentioned, this remains a committed pursuit to collaborate and reach out.

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