Top 10 fashion brands in SA from January – July 2021

Article by Caroline Castanier & Rakhee Naik on BizCommunity

The retail industry has no doubt experienced critical losses due to the global Covid-19 pandemic. However, as we return to the new normal, retailers are looking at innovative ways of capturing market share from competitors, grabbing the attention of a customer who is consistently confronted with brand messaging and sales techniques. Having a positive recommendation of a brand supports brand consideration; and while fashion trends are continually changing, it is important to reflect on strong performing brands in order to envisage future trends. For this reason, we look into fashion brands that performed the strongest in terms of recommendation from January-July 2021.

For the first half of 2021, we have Woolworths leading on recommendation, followed by Takealot and Mr Price. This supports brand consideration, with Woolworths and Mr Price strongly leading the market, translating to a cross-over of these two brands from mid-July 2021 with regards to purchase intent. On the other hand, while Edgars places 10th on recommendation, the brand ranks 6th on consideration noting the brands legacy strength in the market.

Those recommending Woolworths constitute a slightly older age group, with 4 f in 5 f customers supporting brands that have a moral message. This is encouraged by Woolworths’ business journey promoting sustainability of the environment, its people, and communities.

When delving deeper to further understand those recommending Takealot, we note that 9 in 10 customers are looking to purchase good quality products, with 42% noticing advertisements on the internet. In encouraging customers to utilise Takealot, it is also vital that customers are given the opportunity to subscribe to a loyalty programme that demonstrates value in their purchase.

Lastly, Mr Price accommodates for a younger age group of customers, with 27% aged up to 24 years old. Value is a key aspect for Mr Price customers, with almost 4 in 10 customers stating that they do not spend a lot on clothing, speaking to the fast fashion industry gaining traction in the South African market in recent years. This is reiterated by the brand earning 2nd place on value on the BrandIndex measurement tool. 7 in 10 customers recommending Mr Price also often talk about brand advertising they have seen, driving a need for billboard advertising that supports top of mind awareness for the brand.

Overall, while each brand speaks to different customer bases, it is vital that brands keep abreast of the shifting customer needs, over and above changing fashion trends, in order to remain relevant and drive brand recommendation and consideration.

* All data mentioned in the above infographics is significantly higher compared to the South African National Population


BrandIndex:  the real-time & continuous monitoring tool for brands and all the speeches dedicated to them. In South Africa, more than 100 brands are assessed on a daily basis via our panel of approximately 28,700 respondents.

Recommendation: Which of the following retailers would you RECOMMEND to a friend or colleague?

And which of the following retailers would you tell a friend or colleague to avoid?

Population:  South African adults with access to the internet

Period:  from 1 January 2021 to 31 July 2021

N ~ 4 141

Profiles:  segmentation and media planning YouGov tool. Data is collected daily, and YouGov Profiles makes it simple to find and understand the audience that matters most to you. It gives you the power to build and customize a portrait of your consumers’ entire world with unrivaled granularity. More than 9,000 variables are available in South Africa.

Dataset:  2021-08-08

Population:  South African adults with access to the internet who recommend Woolworths within the fashion sector

N ~ 1 596

Population:  South African adults with access to the internet who recommend within the fashion sector

N ~ 1 151

Population:  South African adults with access to the internet who recommend Mr. Price within the fashion sector

N ~ 1 160

Skills project to create job opportunities for women, youth in Cape Clothing Sector

Article found on BizCommunity

The Cape Skills and Employment Accelerator has launched in Cape Town, designed to create employment opportunities for youth and women in the city’s clothing and textile sector over the next three years.

The skills project is the result of a partnership between the City of Cape Town and the Craft and Design Institute (CDI), and is made possible through the National Skills Fund’s partnership with the City.

Goal to train 200 machinists

The plan is for CDI to recruit between 40 to 60 SMMEs to participate in the project and the goal is to train 200 machinists for the sector. The project will enable SMMEs to take on machinists at a greatly reduced cost to their business while creating learning and work opportunities for unemployed women and youth.

The learners will develop skills that include pattern making, pattern cutting, garment making, and sewing with 75% of the time spent in the business supported by 25% classroom time provided by the training provider.

The programme is designed to offer National Qualifications Framework (NQF) level training and workplace opportunities for unemployed youth and women as part of a 12-month learnership, with a view to the SMMEs employing the women at the end of the project. The learners who are recruited for the project must reside within the City of Cape Town metropolitan area, while the businesses may operate outside it.

Creative SMME businesses in the clothing and textile industry, who are building, or on the verge of building, production capacity are strongly encouraged to apply. Applications close on 21 October 2021. This project has been developed in consultation with emerging and growing businesses operating in the clothing and textile sector, and accredited training service providers.

Alderman James Vos, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Opportunities and Asset Management, commented: “Together with the City’s enterprise and investment department, we fund strategic business partners, such as the CDI, in high-growth sectors to secure the skills pipelines businesses need to succeed.

“The youth and women will be supported through an accredited learnership (NQF level 2) in either clothing, footwear, leather, and textile production. SMMEs will be able to create a job profile to suit their individual business needs and recruit participants from the learnerships with little cost to the business. Thanks to tax rebates and incentives, a business can reduce the cost even further.”

Sustainable business development

Erica Elk, group CEO of the CDI, said: “This is not just a skills development project – the CDI is also placing emphasis on the development of the business and its capacity to not only host trainees but hopefully absorb them after the learnership is completed – we are aiming to grow the participating business for long-term sustainability.”

Twigg added: “Urban Management, through its public employment and skills development unit (Corporate EPWP) co-funds the project with R10m per year. This amount is dedicated at ensuring that all participants receive adequate stipends, while they undergo their respective training. The project comes at a time in which government has clearly identified public employment programmes as one of the most strategic and readily available tools needed to drive increased economic inclusion.

“For the City, this partnership also means an evidence-based reorientation of the focus of the City’s EPWP into creating platforms that not only allows for participants to gain work experience while earning – but, creating platforms that allow both the economy and participants to identify and close skills gaps that will open opportunities for growth on a sustainable level.”

Apply by clicking here.

5 tips for small businesses to emerge resilient from the pandemic

Article by Jim Magats on BizCommunity


Small businesses play an important role in our communities and economies. Over the past year, as the pandemic shifted the retail and commerce landscape, small businesses were faced with a lot of change. Many digital small businesses saw dramatic growth during the pandemic, as consumers moved to digital channels. On the other hand, many bricks and mortar small businesses saw their sales decline, some so drastically that they were forced to close either temporarily or for good.

As we start to emerge from the pandemic, small businesses need to continuously adapt to evolving consumer behaviours and expectations. Here are five things small businesses can do to prepare themselves for success as the world rapidly goes digital.

1. Create a smooth (front and back end) omnichannel experience

According to a recent study, e-commerce has doubled in South Africa over the last two years. The study further revealed that the total growth for online retail in South Africa in 2020 came to 66%, bringing the total of online retail in South Africa to R30,2bn.

Despite this reality, many small businesses still lack an online presence. Even among those businesses that do have one, many lack seamless, omnichannel experiences connecting their various selling channels. By enabling seamless omnichannel experiences, small businesses can better meet changing consumer expectations. This does not indicate the need for different systems for online, mobile, and in-store commerce, as it can lead to inventory and order management issues or a disconnected payment and checkout experience. An omnichannel experience means having a connected experience, both on the front and back end.

For example, consumers want to be able to add an item to their online shopping cart and then have it waiting to be tried on when they arrive at the physical store. Or conversely, they want to be able to try something on in a physical store and, if the right size or colour is not available, have it waiting in their online shopping cart for purchase…. instant gratification.

To facilitate this, small businesses should make sure their back end integrates options like reporting, payments, inventory and order management, and seamless integration with third-party partners.

2. Foolproof your business and customers’ information with robust fraud protection measures

As businesses and customers have moved online, the scope for fraud and scams are also increasing. Cards, digital wallets, and contactless payments are replacing cash as the dominant e-commerce payment methods in South Africa. This has given rise to multiple types of fraud, from online shopping fraud to identity theft to tax scams and continues to grow as the number of internet users increases.

Therefore, at a fundamental level, small to medium businesses should monitor their transactions and customer accounts to identify any red flags. For example, if the company comes across any inconsistent shipping or billing information that does not match their records, it may be an indicator to some unusual activity in their account that should be investigated.

Businesses can also help prevent fraud by requiring their customers to create a strong and secure password with a minimum number of characters, including a special character as well as two-factor authentication, should login details be used from a different device.

3. Provide customers with alternate and flexible payment options

It is particularly important to always keep the customer experience first. SMBs should enable choice and flexible payment options for their customers so that consumers can make purchases in the manner they prefer. For example, businesses should allow their customers to pay with alternative funding sources, like buy now pay later solutions or paying with rewards points for example, that can help extend consumer spending power.

4. Collaborate with trusted partners to stay focused on the business

Small businesses must ensure that a lot of things are taken care of. This might include managing their website, marketing to prospects and customers, managing their back office, hiring, managing their staff, customer service and so on. This is when the role of trusted partners come in. Partners can facilitate a lot of backend work, like setting up the company’s e-commerce site, managing accounting, marketing, and more, which can further enable small business owners to focus on what they do best.

5. Make data-driven decisions

Finally, leverage your data efficiently to make informed decisions. Your data can provide you with an understanding of your customers and their preferences, and thereby help drive better customer experiences. Data can also be used to target offers, drive pricing strategies and get more customers to make purchases. Further, efficient use of data can also prevent fraudulent activities and increase trust and security for customers.

Ultimately, by using data effectively, you can also drive good marketing campaigns, which will thereby help drive sales – however, make sure you adhere to the latest South African legislation on the Protection of Personal Information.

The pandemic may not be here to stay, but many of the new trends that have emerged are. Through the five tips above, you can help your business come out of the pandemic from a position of strength.

Mental hurdles entrepreneurs face when starting up

Article by Banele Rewo on BizCommunity


Going into business is not as simple as identifying a need, devising a way to service that need, charge for supplying it and then boom! bags of money. Going into business requires a change of mentality in how you navigate the world.

Here are some of the challenges you might face and how to overcome them.


It’s not by choice, but by excitement to start a business based on rumours and incomplete information and social media rumours about the particular industry e.g. trucking has many hidden costs of operations. Poultry farming is plagued with bird mortality. In property, months or years pass without tenants.

Take time to enter an industry you are unfamiliar with. Log off and go find people already operating and who can show you the real challenges within that industry. If you can’t find them, then you should be far from trying to spend any money on it when you can’t source peers.

Social media hype

Access to thousands of peers and strangers ready to congratulate you or reject your idea or product can kill your spirit before you begin or get you too many orders that could expose your unpreparedness or incompetence of product or service for large orders. Start with small groups and repeatedly satisfy them while fixing your product or business.

Delay your announcement on social media till you have gained a number of repeat customers and have gained feedback you have solved already.

Emotional Intelligence

When you are launching your business or idea you are convinced it is the best thing ever created. The market is often not as excited about your business as you are. Tensions get high when dealing with stubborn clients or ones asking too many questions already answered. Taking it personally can make respond rudely and lose customers.

Identity crisis

You are not your business. Your business will take up most of your time and when it fails it will feel like you, as the person, is failing. You need to separate the two identities and understand that a business failure only means the skills or information you have needs improvement so you can help your business perform better through challenges. You are not a failure.


When you start your business and your friends do not support you. It’s not because they do not love or care about you. It’s because, like any other customer they have to use their money to buy products they need, want or like to exchange for their hard-earned money.

You have the responsibility to convince them to buy like any other customer. If they buy because of friendship only, then it means there is something terribly wrong with your service or product.

Prepare for money

When starting your business you can’t help but be excited by how little money you will spend to get stock, mark up, sell and make major profits. In most cases, the small costs are more frequent than the sales and they are in areas you never accounted for. Petrol, data, take-aways on the road – all those seem small but over time they add up. Also, when you get big money without preparing yourself mentally, you are likely to waste it and lose it all.

Over motivation

Motivational content lifts your spirits up but only for a short while before you are back to feeling depressed again. You need little motivation but more discipline when you start because discipline trains your mind how to stay on course even when it’s rainy or cold outside.

Celebrate women with SA’s no1 retailer, Ackermans

Article by Ackermans on BizCommunity

South Africans mark August as a month to celebrate women’s achievements and the important role that women play in our society. Ackermans, South Africa’s leading value retailer, will once again be acknowledging moms, sisters, girlfriends, and female colleagues by celebrating them and what makes them the role models they are today.

This local fashion destination for trend pieces and outfit building basics prides itself on its inclusive sizing and value proposition. With sizes ranging from 26-50 across all lines, and a wide selection of styles to suit every beautiful body shape, finding the perfect fit and garment is effortless.

Ackermans’ denim range features everything from skinny jeans to bootlegs, and in August, the popular Mom jean will be launching too. So no matter what your day entails, whether you’re based at a desk or bending over and chasing after a busy toddler, you’ll find your perfect fit.

Confidence starts with a good foundation, and finding the right bra style and size is easy at Ackermans. In celebration of women’s curves, the retailer has an extensive lingerie department with an affordable price point of R129.99 for two pack T-shirt bra set, and shapewear at R119.99. There is no need to compromise on fit or style going forward.

And before we know it, we’ll be in summer. Ackermans will also be adding new styles to its range of fashionable and classic dresses for all ages toward the end of the month. From toddlers to moms, you’ll find the perfect dress, and because it’s not uncommon to experience a slight chill in the air as we wait to welcome warmer weather, Ackermans has a selection of knitwear, and denim jackets offering trans-seasonal outfit building solutions for all.

To view Ackermans extensive women’s wear and children styles, click here or head to your nearest store.

If you’d like to stay up to date on Ackermans news, visit the website or follow the brand on Instagram and Facebook.

Pre-loved clothing paving a pathway out of poverty for SA women

Article found on BizCommunity

The ongoing partnership between retailer H&M and social enterprise Clothes to Good (CTG) is helping to create employment for women in need in South Africa.

Founded in Gauteng in 2011, CTG is focused on caring for the environment through the recycling of clothes, and helping people – particularly mothers of children with disabilities – out of poverty.

Among the organisation’s initiatives that tackle issues linked to poverty is its micro-business programme, which currently empowers 108 women – 56 of whom have children with disabilities – to become successful entrepreneurs in their communities by selling recycled, pre-loved clothes. The collections process for these garments is facilitated and supported through H&M and other businesses, schools and financial institutions.

“Clothes to Good and H&M South Africa have an established history, having worked in partnership on several other far-reaching initiatives since 2016,” says CTG founder, Jesse Naidoo. “In 2020, with the enormous socio-economic challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, H&M sought to expand on the collaboration by providing vital funding and support to CTG for its micro-business programme.”

Multi-pronged support

Seeing the initiative as a constructive response to the economic challenges the women faced, H&M became an integral partner of the programme in 2018, supporting mothers of children with disabilities through vital financial assistance, garment collection and therapy intervention.

“Many women and mothers endure the hardship of the economic burden, even more so in lockdowns. Mothers of children with disabilities are particularly vulnerable – often stranded at home and excluded from employment opportunities due to the fact there is no one to care for their children,” says Naidoo.

“These women and mothers are initially introduced to us through our collaboration with Afrika Tikkun before embarking on our full therapy-driven assessment and training programme. As part of the micro-business programme they receive financial literacy and wellness training, general sales training, business support and ongoing mentorship. When they purchase their first 10kg bale of clothing from Clothes to Good they feel empowered and supported to run their own businesses.”

Tammy Greyling, operations director at CTG, adds, “For these women, it is very difficult to find pathways out of poverty. However, by breaking down the barriers to employment for those who need it most, the micro-business project ultimately empowers women to become entrepreneurs in their own communities and then go on to create a chain of employment opportunities.”

Diverting textiles from landfills

“At H&M, we do everything we can to prevent clothing and textiles ending up in landfills. Upcycling, and eventually recycling, is two of many ways to fulfill our goals towards a more sustainable fashion future,” explains Caroline Nelson, H&M South Africa country manager. “In this way, the micro-business programme encompasses far more than driving positive fashion disposal behaviour and environmental awareness. It also views sustainability as a core driver of socio-economic development and upliftment,” she says.

As part of H&M Group’s ambition to become fully circular and climate positive by 2040, all garments and textiles no longer suitable to wear are reused and converted into products. These products include toys for early childhood development used in Clothes to Good’s 123ECD programme and resources for children with disabilities. Clothes that cannot be used in products are shredded into textile fibres used in a variety of industries such as the motor industry and bed manufacturing.

“For the women participating in the micro-business programme the benefits are innumerable,” says Greyling. “These women are now able to provide for their families, put food on the table, pay rent and school fees, grow their individual ventures, create further employment opportunities and have hope for the future. At a further stage, we look forward to expanding the programme from Gauteng to other areas.

How to get involved

Commenting on how the public can support the programme, Nelson says, “We want to make it easy for the consumer to be a part of this vital initiative and make a difference! Look out for our ‘Let’s Change Fashion’ campaign, part of the ongoing H&M global garment collection initiative, which began in 2013. This campaign encourages you to drop your bag of pre-loved and old garments in the recycling box at your local H&M store.

“Every bit of clothing makes a difference and enables you to help to create gainful employment for women in our country’s vulnerable, low-income sector. “

She concludes, “By encouraging customers to recycle their garments, ‘Let’s Change Fashion’ aims to inspire and encourage change. Together, by driving meaningful and long-lasting impact across the entire fashion value chain, we can create sustainable livelihoods, allow women to earn independent incomes and improve their, and their families’, futures.”

StartupStory: Neighbourgood, the coliving and coworking community

Article written by Evan-Lee Courie on BizCommunity


Born out of the pandemic, in July 2020, Neighbourgood was created with the intention to change the landscape of property in South Africa. Tshedza Magugumela, community manager of Neighbourgood, shares more.

Can you tell us a bit about Neighbourgood?

Neighbourgood is a coliving and coworking community, focused on bringing good to neighbourhoods by repurposing space across the city of Cape Town. Since launching the company in July 2020, we now have six living and working spaces in De Waterkant, Green Point, City Bowl, and Woodstock. Our aim is to change the way people live and work, by giving them a world-class network of spaces and a platform to live a good life.

When, how and why did you get started?

Born out of the pandemic, in July 2020, Neighbourgood was created with the intention to change the landscape of property in South Africa. Companies downsized and needed more efficient spaces; people living in apartments were isolated and in search of community, and so it was our mission to be at the forefront of providing a solution for them. Moreover, we wanted to give new hope to the City of Cape Town and South Africa as a whole, by being a shining light at the end of what seemed to be the dark tunnel of the pandemic.

What is the core function of Neighbourgood?

Our core function is centered around providing people with thoughtfully designed, all-inclusive living and working spaces that offer exceptional amenities and a connected community. The beauty of Neighbourgood is that the experience is curated by our team and our members, bringing collaborative ideas to life.

Coworking has been a blossoming trend for some time now. Tell us about the decision to create a coliving environment?

Coliving has been widely adopted all over the world. With Cape Town’s rich history and global perception as a hub for local and foreign travellers alike, the need to give people a place to live was a no-brainer. It’s often said that living in Cape Town feels like living abroad, so who wouldn’t want to feel like their home is a holiday? We’ve got locations for every type of person around the city of Cape Town, so you’re never too far from Neighbourgood.

Who is your target market?

Everyone is welcome at Neighbourgood! From digital nomads, young professionals and grad students, to creatives, entrepreneurs and travelers, we have a spot for you. We thrive on diversity and inclusion, and we love people that love people.

Since inception, what are some of the obstacles you’ve had to overcome?

Giving coliving the space it needs for people to be interested in adopting this lifestyle has required an education process because while co-working has been around for some time in South Africa, the concept of coliving is still new. We see the combination of both as our biggest opportunity. We’re built to provide solutions to the problems our members face.

Running a business during the pandemic has of course been challenging, including the frequent lockdowns, the economic decline as well as launching a brand-new company in the midst of it all. Ultimately, if there is anything Covid has taught us is that we are all searching for community and that’s what our spaces offer. So through all the challenges we have faced, we see an opportunity to help solve a problem and in doing so, bring good to neighbourhoods.

Soon Neighbourgood East City will be launching. Tell us more about this.

Neighbourgood East City is a dynamic coliving space in the heart of Cape Town CBD. As the home of the iconic Townhouse Hotel, its significance in the history of Cape Town is one which we appreciate, and we have chosen to have some of the existing design remain to form part of the new history that we will build here. With 100+ coliving suites, a coworking space, a MasterChef style shared kitchen, a delightful cafe on ground floor (Bread, Milk and Honey), a barbershop, electric scooters, community events and more, Neighbourgood East City is the perfect place for anyone to come and stay with us for a day or for a year.

What’s the criteria for someone wanting to join Neighbourgood?

The criteria is simple: If you’re a good human, you love collaboration over competition, you’re looking for convenience and affordability, and you can add value to our community in even the smallest way, then we want you to come and live or work with us!

Is there anything else you would like to share about Neighbourgood?

Neighbourgood East City officially opened its doors on the 1 August. We are hosting a launch week from 16-20 August and as part of that, we are giving away a free week’s stay for 100 people! If you’ve been looking for a sign to go on holiday, take a staycation or you’d like to experience what being a Neighbourgood member is all about, now is the time! Check out our Instagram page (@neighbourgood_sa) for more information.

For more, go to

Pepkor’s sales rebound from worst of pandemic

Article by Nqobile Dludla on BizCommunity


South African retailer Pepkor Holdings reported on Friday a 13.9% rise in revenue for the nine months through June, rebounding from a low base in 2020 when it could hardly trade at all in some months due to lockdown restrictions.

Group revenue totalled R53.9bn for the nine months and included revenue growth of 8.1% reported for the six months to 31 March and revenue growth of 27.9% for Pepkor’s third quarter to 30 June.

The retailer’s shares rose 3.36% by 0841 GMT.

Pepkor, majority-owned by Steinhoff, also said it completed the refinancing of R2,5bn in term loan funding.

“This further strengthens the group’s liquidity, debt repayment profile and reduces the group’s cost of funding,” the owner of Pep and Ackermans clothing chains said.

Refreshed brand and store design for Wellness Warehouse

Article by Lauren Hartzenberg on BizCommunity


South African health and well-being retailer Wellness Warehouse has opened three new-look stores, reflecting the company’s recent brand refresh and offering an elevated in-store customer experience. The new-look stores are located at La Lucia and Westville Malls in Durban, and Somerset Mall in Somerset West.

Wellness Warehouse has been working on its transformation with branding agency International Trends Institute (ITI) for the past few months. Updated branding includes – amongst other things – a new logo and colour palette, which have been rolled out across the business.

Supporting journeys to natural well-being

The new Wellness Warehouse store concept was inspired by nature and a sense of locality. “Using nature as our guide, we have fine-tuned our aesthetics to express our core mission and value of empowering personal journeys to natural well-being,” Kate Aitken, marketing manager of Wellness Warehouse told Bizcommunity.

Aitken said that Wellness focused on how it could further support its customers on this journey, by creating stores that are designed to meet a range of unique needs, with a team on hand to help shoppers connect and consume more consciously. She explained that the store layout was re-engineered with core shopper needs and journeys in mind – from basic replenishment to individual consulting.

Interior design and display

The refreshed store design incorporates more rounded edges throughout to soften the space, with all-natural wooden finishes and granite tops to elevate the feel of the store, and texture to create interest. Sustainable materials were used wherever possible, said Aitken.

Factored into the redesign was the desire to deliver an increased feeling of space and breathability for customers moving through the stores. And to deliver a multi-sensory experience, the air inside the store is infused with the retailer’s signature scent, the Wellness Balance Essential Oil, and experiential zones have been added in which customers can fully engage with the products.

“Our ‘Inspire Tables’ showcase carefully curated products across categories to encourage customers to see wellness for what it is – a truly holistic experience that goes beyond what we eat or how we move. Where possible, we have displayed key ingredients that speak to what sets our products apart.”

The new store design and customer experience will be rolled out to all new Wellness stores going forward.

Aitken said, “At its core, our transformation has been inspired by our mission to create a brand and space that truly reflects who we are at our core, facilitating a connection between mind and body in one seamless holistic experience. Inspired by a reverence for nature and locality, our new brand and store design honours our deep connection to the natural environment, while supporting physical, emotional and mental well-being for all who inhabit it.”

Wellness Warehouse CEO Simon Alston commented, “We are thrilled to launch our new store concept, which represents the culmination of our partnership with local brand agency, International Trend Institute. At Wellness Warehouse, our passion is making good health and wellbeing accessible to more people. For far too long, navigating the natural health industry has been difficult and overwhelming for many people, and we set out to change that.

“ITI understood that our stores need to simplify the customer experience, while simultaneously elevating the sense of excitement and discovery that comes with a journey to holistic well-being. With this transformation, we believe that we have set the new benchmark for the health industry.”

Wellness Warehouse also recently revamped its Live Life Well Rewards programme, which now offers shoppers up to 3% cashback across all purchases, which can be redeemed in store and online.

Aitken concluded, “From a brand point of view, our messaging focuses on inspiring customers to live life well. We’re on the wellness journey with them, and we meet them wherever they’re at. We’re focused on building our community by offering value through accessible education, as well as through our newly-improved Live Life Well Rewards Programme.”

The decade of @home

Article by TFG on BizCommunity
Lifestyle retailer @home has reported that ‘wellbeing’ continues to be the most searched word on the @home website after having never featured in their top 20 words searched for the website before. Customer sentiment, sales indicators and community impact of this category confirm that the ‘decade of home’ is here to stay.
“In the early days of lockdown, we noticed that the conversation changed from healthy living to wellbeing. The role that one’s home plays in this narrative is pivotal as that is the central place where one’s wellbeing begins. How well you sleep, how well you eat, your wellbeing when you’re working from home, the routines you follow and the equipment you use. This new direction opened up many exciting possibilities for us. Our @home designers started to think about wellbeing in every room of the house and every facet of your life. Creating your sanctuary that is safe and at home,” said Shani Naidoo, TFG Group director.

The trend of wellbeing has revolutionised customer shopping behaviour from filling baskets with functional merchandise to transparently expressing intent and a new way of life – expressions of creating calm home environments, decluttering spaces and practising mindfulness in supporting local trade. @home has since bolstered its local supply chain by increasing orders with local suppliers and in the process securing local jobs at a very trying time. The brand’s local merchandise offering has grown in a number of product categories such as in bedding, mattresses, furniture, coffee, cooking ingredients, home fragrances and bath and body products.

Growing local changes lives

The new direction of wellbeing led the @home design team to develop a Simply Stored range and procure The Home Edit; both of these ranges are centred on organising one’s life. The more organised you are, the less cluttered your life is, the less stressed you should be. A great advantage that the team found while developing the Simply Stored range is that some of the items could be made locally, and where that was not the case, the @home team has been able to work with local partners to acquire the items needed to complete the collection.

Proudly SA items can be found throughout @home, from Egyptian cotton linen, to duvet inners, to self-care products to mattresses, selected couches, to home, office and outdoor furniture ranges.

In an effort to revive the SA textile industry @home have collaborated with a leading local manufacturer of fine woven and warp knitted home furnishings fabrics for a variety of products, including cushions. They are working with a company that employs up to 300 people, many who have more than 30 years’ service. Simultaneously, some are representatives of second and even third-generation family members who have developed their skills in the business.

Natural feather and down and synthetic duvets and pillows are produced locally in Cape Town by a family-run company that its founding director and his family still run. Now employing over 200 South Africans, most of their 30 original staff have stayed and continue to produce the same high-quality goods responsible for their success over the years. All fillings are processed to exceed international standards.

@home’s Egyptian cotton bedding, across all thread counts, is manufactured locally in the Western Cape. This superior quality product comes from the hands of 373 female employees working as machinists, spreaders, cutters, folders and production supervisors, ensuring the best quality finished product gets to you. At least 81% of the female staff are the breadwinners for their immediate and extended families.

@home’s 100% cotton everyday towels, the Zero Twist and Ribbed Cotton ranges, are made by a well-established local towelling manufacturer synonymous with quality and durability. The company has long focused on maintaining sustainable value chains within the industry.

“Magnificent Barista Boys is one of my favourite local stories. What started as collaboration with two young entrepreneurs has developed into a business partnership. The @home team worked with the duo to develop a sustainable business from the ground up and are selling exclusively to @home. Magnificent Barista Boys started selling only two varieties of coffee beans, growing to 17 active lines selling on average 1000 units a week in-store and online. This is the power of localisation, driving sustainable economic growth for all,” concluded Naidoo.

About TFG:

With 31 retail brands that trade in fashion, value, jewellery, accessories, sporting apparel, cellular, homeware and furniture, TFG is one of the leading retail groups in South Africa. Besides South Africa, TFG Africa also has a presence in Botswana, Zambia, Namibia, Lesotho and Eswatini through various retail brands. TFG first entered the UK market through the acquisition of the premium womenswear brand Phase Eight in 2015, followed by the acquisition of Whistles in 2016 and Hobbs in 2017. TFG’s presence in the Australian market was strengthened through its acquisition in July 2017 of Retail Apparel Group Pty Ltd (RAG), a leading Australian menswear apparel retailer. TFG’s vision is to be the leading fashion lifestyle retailer in Africa whilst growing its international footprint. TFG has over 4,300 outlets in 31 countries, and employs more than 34,500 people with over 26,3 million customers (RSA).