Founder Spotlight: Charity Migwi

A look at Double Dee’s Lingerie

Charity Migwi, Founder/CEO Double Dee’s Lingerie

Tell us a bit about your company

What inspired you to start your business/ what opportunity in the market are you seeking to address?

What are one or two of the biggest wins or most encouraging experiences you’ve had so far?

A lot of women leave our shop wearing a new bra, and they ask us to throw away the one they came in with. Something else I am so proud of is that we have created a customer experience that goes beyond a conventional vendor-buyer relationship and that has allowed us to be there for our clients through the milestones in their lives. We are with them when they are in the throes of dating, during their weddings, and when they get pregnant and their bodies change over 9 months. And then — when they begin nursing, we have what they need again.

It’s amazing that we’ve been able to create this experience and these relationships. My business partner on site at the store full time has even attended many of our client’s bridal showers, weddings, and baby showers.

What about your personal background, experience, or perspective fuels your passion for this venture?

Another key thing we committed to do when we started the company was tol make sure African women were front and center in our marketing. Unfortunately, all our vendors are based in Europe or North America, and so it would have been easier for us to use the images they provide. But we invest the extra time and money to reshoot the products we carry with models who represent our clients in skin colour, body size, and life experience.

Photo credit: Double Dees Lingerie

What have been one or two of the biggest learnings so far?

At the same time, we had time to understand what the pandemic was and what changes we needed to implement to make sure we kept both our staff and our clients safe. And since we opened back in June, we can barely keep up with demand. And even though a lot of clients still prefer to come to the store for the customer experience, we now have a lot of repeat online orders too which has helped us sustain growth without the operational challenges of expanding the store. Although we are two months away from moving to bigger premises because 2020 was a remarkable year and our backroom storage literally can’t fit anything else.

The second biggest lesson was the importance of breaking off ties when the situation calls for it. For us, this meant buying out our two business partners. We founded the company as a team of four friends and for the first 3 years when we were fundraising and setting up, things were going great. But as we got into the day-to-day of running the company, things weren’t going as smoothly. And because we were all friends, we gave each other a lot of rope, but eventually, we had no more rope to give. It was one of the most difficult things we ever had to do because it also meant we lost friendships. But ultimately, it was the best thing that we did for the future of the company.

What is an obstacle you anticipate grappling with as you continue to build this venture?

What are a surprise or two that you’ve encountered as an entrepreneur?

Connect Double Dee’s Lingerie or Charity for updates on Double Dee’s Lingerie’s progress!

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