We recently got some time to chat with Rex Osafo-Asare from Asili. For those that don’t know, Asili is a London based clothing company focused on promoting Africa in a positive light. I won’t give everything away though, that’s what’s the interview is for!
Despite being friend of a friend I had never previously met Rex, but we had a great talk about his business and the business of t-shirts in general. We had a lot of fun and found it really helpful as we are just starting out ourselves (I actually thought I would be transcribing all of this!). If you are in a similar position in your business, there is some good advice for you. Even if you aren’t, this is still a fun listen.
[audio:http://blog.mayamada.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/asili_interview_pt1.mp3|titles=Asili Interview pt1]
[audio:http://blog.mayamada.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/asili_interview_pt2.mp3|titles=Asili Interview pt2]
[audio:http://blog.mayamada.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/asili_interview_pt3.mp3|titles=Asili Interview pt3]
[audio:http://blog.mayamada.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/asili_interview_pt4.mp3|titles=Asili Interview pt4]
You’ll have to excuse the rough editing. We really had no idea it would go this long but hopefully you find it interesting throughout. We’ll be doing this more often over the coming months. If you are an establish t-shirt company interested in doing an interview with us, get in touch!
- The original of asili and it’s logo – fashionable clothing for Africa. What Asili means (you have to listen for that…or just Google it)
- How many people and why there are no women in the team!
- Rex’s role in the company
- Some of the obstacles in starting up his t-shirt company (money and awareness)
- Grafting to make the business a success and attract fans (Facebook included)
- An interlude while Rex got the door!
- You can never beat word of mouth
- The importance of referrals
- How Asili got into brick and mortar stores
- Some tips on how to approach store owners and dealing with knock backs
- How they look to brand themselves through associations with their t-shirts
- Online versus offline: which is better?
- Remembering the importance of getting recognition even on a small scale.
- Breaking he myth that online is easier. If you build it..they still may not come. You still have to put in the work
- We were working on the new site design while doing this interview. You can check that out now!
- Asili reaching as far as America!
- Thoughts on appealing to different demographics
- Having realistic goals at the beginning – you have to measure using realistic standards.
- Sometime things don’t do to plan, reality can be tough sometimes.
- Breadth versus depth when it comes to products
- What’s coming up next for Asili, looking to the future
Don’t forget to check out Asili – World cup tees are out now