In the Special Collectors Edition of Ebony Magazine featuring the late Muhammad Ali on the cover, the Nigerian princess of luxury Jennifer Obayuwana is featured and interviewed on her view on luxury in Africa among other fashion topics. For those needing an intro, Jennifer is the Executive Director of Polo Luxury, a high-end boutique owned by her father John Obayuwana. Polo Luxury has grown to become the ultimate spot for authentic luxury goods in Lagos.
Looking ever the fashion princess she is, Jennifer chose to pose in a Lanre DaSilva Ajayi (LDA) “Erela” dress for her feature shot. She opens up about the struggles of running a fashion business and more specifically dealing with issues in the luxury niche.
Excerpts from the interview…
On her family business and role in the company:
“Polo Luxury is Nigeria’s foremost luxury goods company, which my father and CEO, John Obayuwana founded over 25 years ago with a vision of making some of the world’s most beautiful and exclusive brands available in Africa. We specialize in high-end watches, fine jewellery and fashion accessories. We have exclusive partnerships with Rolex, Cartier, Piaget, Chopard, Hublot and Mont Blanc, to name a few.
In the fashion department, we offer brands such as Gucci, Jimmy Choo and Salvatore Ferragamo. As executive director, I execute the company’s strategy, ensuring the maximization of revenues and business growth. On the fashion side, I am creating the requisite landscape to assist the introduction of international brands into Nigeria.”
On how infrastructural challenges affect expansion:
“Basic needs such as electricity and security have been an issue. For many years, the lack of malls was an impediment for international and local brands. Before now, we had informal stand-alone outlets providing limited options. The building of malls has attracted some international retailers; however, it is insufficient compared to the number of brands looking to enter the market. Rents remain very high as a large number of retailers compete for a restricted number of available spaces.”
On the African designers she is crushing on:
“Loza Maléombho, Lanre DaSilva-Ajayi Meena, Bridget Awosika, Tiffany Amber and Zashadu. I created the Polo Avenue Fashion series to actively participate in the promotion of local brands. We are looking to identify and support emerging talents on the continent, promote their work, and expose them to a wider audience.”
At Style Rave, we aim to inspire our readers by providing engaging content to not just entertain but to inform and empower you as you ASPIRE to become more stylish, live smarter and be healthier. Follow us on Instagram! @StyleRave_ ♥