- Relebohile Moeng founded Afri-Berry, a range of organic skin and hair products, after she suffered 150 stitches on her face after a car accident.
- Almost 10 years later, their products are available in Pick ‘n Pay, Checkers and Clicks.
- Afri-berry is also found in Swaziland, Namibia, Botswana, and New Zealand.
Ten years ago, Relebohile Moeng had a life changing experience.
She was in a car accident that left more than 150 stitches on her face.
Her doctors said the only way to minimize scarring is through plastic surgery.
Instead, she opted for natural remedies.
“When I started using cold-pressed argan oil, I experienced the true healing power of organic products. Natural products penetrate up to 90% of the skin,” Moeng told News24.
When her skin got on well with the oils, Moeng wanted more people to access the healing effects of these oils.
It seemed like the perfect time to start her own business as she had been disappointed before her accident.
Moeng started running.
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“I didn’t have the luxury of the time. At the time, I was the mother of two young children that we had to get through school. So I had to get up and do something. I did something to make bread I barely knew I was up was my fate, “she said.
Afri berry flowers
With R 10,000 as start-up capital, she founded Afri-Berry, a series of Organic skin and hair products.
Afri-Berry stands out from other organic products on the market because of its ingredients and formulas.
The Jamaican castor oil is mixed with cow placenta and the raw shea butter with mango extract.
“The great thing about organic products is that you can use them from head to toe. The products can also be used on babies, especially babies with skin conditions like eczema.
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“So we positioned ourselves as multi-purpose products,” she said.
In the early days, Moeng’s products were stored in small retailers.
“In 2015, the Pick ‘n Pay hair care buyer used our products. She contacted us and told us that she had used the products and that they liked what they did with their hair.”
The sky is the limit
Afri-Berry is now represented in more than 200 Pick ‘n Pay branches across the country. Checkers and other online retailers have also partnered with Moeng.
Many companies struggled in the first year of the pandemic. However, 2020 was a successful year for the hair and skin brand.
It has been listed with major healthcare retailers, Clicks, with products in more than 200 stores across the country.
Afri-Berry didn’t stop there; An online shop was also started.
“Being in business isn’t easy. It’s like being on the sea of life; there are storms and winds every day.”
But Moeng is not ready to jump ship.
It also exports its products to Swaziland, Namibia, Botswana and New Zealand. And it plans to continue expanding to other parts of Africa and the world.
Let women lead
Moeng is enthusiastic about the growth and development of women and young people.
Afri-Berry’s production facility in Cape Town is dominated by women.
Its headquarters in Irene, Pretoria, has 27 employees, and these positions are predominantly held by black women.
To date, Moeng has offered more than 55 paid internships to unemployed graduates.
“There is nothing we cannot do. As entrepreneurs, we should continue to empower other women and show them the power and value they have in themselves.
“Women have always been the backbone of the economy.”