Okolor (pronounced Oh-Colour) is a fashion centered online store founded by George Ossai. Okolor offers fashion enthusiasts the opportunity to source for the best African fashion brands. At Okolor, various designers can showcase their outfits, making it easier for the public to connect with the designer and purchase any outfit of their choice without necessarily coming in for a fitting or making a bunch of phone calls as designs are offered in a range of different sizes.
Okolor sees itself as the “middleman”, taking the stress and worry off the client who probably may not be able to meet an appointment with his/her designer or is probably too far away to do so. Founder of Okolor.com, George Ossai, wants us to know that;
“with Okolor you can go to a fashion show, see a dress, take note of it and come back home without even knowing the designer. All you have to do is log on to our website and you are sure to see that design there and you can purchase it right away. This helps fashion designers focus on what they know best, that is, making clothes while we do the sales and marketing on their behalf.”
Rivers State born George Ossai who is also an environmental biologist believes that entrepreneurship is one of the ways young people can contribute to solving societal problems and with a love for building things from scratch, he is able to pursue his passion of solving societal issues through technology. He also believes that society can grow and develop from small positive actions taken by a large number of well-meaning people.
When George Ossai launched Okolor in July this year, he originally intended to experiment with it for 6 months to see if the business idea was viable or not. With every business comes a challenge and George’s challenge was getting established designers to register on the platform. The platform however turned things around when they decided to go after young but talented Nigerian fashion designers. Today Okolor has well known designers knocking on its doors.
Speaking on the turn around, George says that;
“…one thing that really made people say yes! to us was our “no risk” listing strategy. Designers were not charged money to list on our platform and benefit from the publicity. They were charged 10% of their sales money but only when a product of theirs was ordered – if they made a sale they could afford to pay the charge, but if they didn’t, they had nothing to lose since they are not been charged for listing on the platform.”
With Okolor operating the pay-on-delivery model, a lot of folks in the startup-community would no doubt be interested in knowing how they plan to remain sustainable in an industry that requires at least 50% down payment to facilitate a job. One thing is certain though, Okolor is no longer an experiment and George is definitely on a mission to plant the seed of trust in the hearts of Nigerian fashion connoisseurs.