Asantii Aims to Become the World’s First African Global Fashion Brand: HuntrMania

Rwandan-born textile entrepreneur Maryse Mbonyumutwa is positioning the label in the affordable luxury segment, with an eye on a global consumer.

PARIS — Could Asantii become the first African fashion label to compete with the likes of Sandro, A.P.C. and Ba&sh?

Rwandan-born entrepreneur Maryse Mbonyumutwa believes the world is ready for what she bills as the first African global brand, as she prepares to launch the contemporary label, designed and produced in Africa, that she hopes will serve as an incubator for the local fashion industry.

The chief executive officer of Pink Mango, a multinational group with 23 years of experience in garment manufacturing and the production of promotional items, Mbonyumutwa has worked extensively with factories in Asia, but was frustrated that the apparel industry wasn’t creating more jobs on the African continent.

Likewise, she was puzzled that such a huge territory had yet to produce a brand for a worldwide audience. “I’ve worked for so many brands from so many different countries — France, U.K., Germany, Americans, even the Japanese have Uniqlo— but I’ve never had in hand a technical pack for an African global brand,” she told WWD.

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