South African television star Tumisho Masha must have drawn great inspiration from his gig as a presenter of the exclusive magazine TV show Top Billing, because he is all about luxury these days.
Tumisho, alongside his brother Lerato Masha, recently launched a new online retail store that they have proudly named AmAfrikan, and which they hope will embrace Africa's largely unexplored luxury art and design market by offering artists and entrepreneurs a platform to showcase their talents, designs and products... globally!
"We started AmAfrikan.com to find, develop and amplify African excellence and to make it accessible for the world to experience and appreciate," says Tumisho.
Tumisho, alongside his brother Lerato Masha, recently launched a new online retail store that they have proudly named AmAfrikan
The virtual offering currently features art, fashion, accessories, furniture and homeware.
Artists include internationally known Bianca Nguema; Olatunji Sanusi (who is engaging the local art community with his poignant paper collages); Lebohang Motaung (who brings a soulful connection to art and hair plaiting); and the self-made Thulani Nhlapo, whose images are the colour of life.
Other brands included in the platform are Shark Tank SA investment winner Vusani Ravele of Native Décor (chic hand-finished home accessories); FlyLikeAGirl, which are airline pilot Amanda Kandawire’s stylish phone accessories (all about representation, identity and affirmation); Theo Baloyi’s Bathu, which tells a South African township story with its street-credible designer sneakers; leading premium sock brand Skinny Sbu Socks and sophisticated African inspired jewellery line LuOme by Lusanda Omela.
The digistore's name is of great importance because the brothers want it to emcompass the philosophy of the business: to uphold the values of Ubuntu, black consciousness and heritage restoration. AmAfrikan strongly represents this.
"We want to cultivate pride and ownership around local, quality brands," explains Tumisho. "If we can help rid Africa of the inferiority complex that has allowed its treasures to be taken, repackaged and sold back to the continent by the international world, then we will be making a difference!"
Although this business is currently a fledgling, it packs a lion of a punch when it comes to backing.
"AmAfrikan has forged symbiotic relationships with ProudlySA and the Johannesburg Chamber of Commerce and Industry," says Lerato. "This will help create a meaningful market access both locally and internationally for our partners."
AmAfrikan is open for business. Check out the online store at www.amafrikan.com or follow the conversation on social media with the hashtag #AmAfrikan