“I do not give up easily as I am very patient person by nature” – Nkosinathi Fani Masilela
Nkosinathi Fani Masilela has experienced failure so much that he knows it like the back of his hand and has not only seen failure ,tasted it, touched it, smelt it but still refused to be defined by it.
Fani failed so much that failure became something that he wasn’t scared of anymore. Instead of adversity breaking him down, it however did the opposite as he used it to build himself and moulded his strong character and resilient spirit. “Failure taught me patience and the ability to have faith and hope in the unknown,” Fani said.
It may have taken him a decade to complete a three-year national diploma Marketing course, Fani also spent full 8 years running a business that brought zero profits. Born and bred in Siyabuswa, Mpumalanga he was only 14 when he left home to pursue a better life in Pretoria. In 2012, Fani founded Sqomani Authentic Wear, when he was just 21-years-old utilising his limited pocket money.
He credits his incredible faith and unshakable hope that pushed him to keep trying and pushing again and again until more people warmed up to his brand. “I still don’t know how I managed to stay in a business for 8 years without profit but when you have hope, you have faith as you hold a belief that says the future will be better,” he said.
Fani wasn’t really bothered when his company wasn’t making money as he was having fun while pushing his brand and taking it places. “This is more like a hobby, making money out of it is actually a bonus for me,” he said with pride.
Fani believed he may have failed at love too after a decade-long relationship, which seemed unbreakable collapsed unexpectedly. “I got dumped after 10 long years of dating, so failure is nothing new to me,” he stated. However, the support structure he received from his family and their belief in him despite the many setbacks also played a part in keeping him going with his brand and studies.
Although he felt embarrassed about struggling to complete his marketing diploma, he still persevered and ensured that he completed his qualification. Hope and faith are now some of the core values of his company, Sqomani Authentic Wear which has continued to grow in leaps and bounds. “We at Sqomani Authentic Wear believe that with hope and faith anything situation can change for the better. All one has to do is to put in the work while hoping that the situation will improve and change,” Fani said.
Despite the setbacks he has faced, Fani got an opportunity to dress the entire Drip Footwear staff for their 14th store opening at Phola Mall near Kwamhlanga, his proudest moment so far and he said it was the start of a very good relationship with the Drip brand. Despite the evident hurdles, perseverance, enthusiasm, and the joy of developing things made it simpler for him to remain the course.