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Rubby Akua Kwaabea Nyarko | Ghana | Entrepreneurship Requires Resilience!

CEO | Entrepreneur | Philanthropist

Hello, my name is Rubby Akua Kwaabea Nyarko, and I am the CEO of RO NATURALS, an organic skincare brand that specializes in Shea Butter and Black Soap. Growing up, I had always dreamed of becoming a bilingual secretary, but unfortunately, my major in French did not work out for me despite years of studying. However, after completing my BSc in Procurement and Logistics, I had the opportunity to work as an assistant secretary to a Deputy Minister in one of the Ministries in Ghana during my National Service. It was an exciting experience, but after my service ended, I felt like I had more to offer and wanted to explore new opportunities. After two years of working as a Guest Relations Officer in a 5-star luxury hotel in Ghana, I resigned because I was bored with the routine job and knew I had more to offer. I spent a year at home trying out different things that ultimately failed, and during this time, I noticed that my skin was breaking out badly, and my complexion was darkening. I tried different cosmetics recommended by friends and family, but they were expensive and often made my skin lighter than my natural complexion. Then I remembered my grandmother's Alata Samina, a traditional black soap she used to make in the village that had numerous benefits for the skin. I researched the soap and decided to add some natural ingredients like honey, coconut oil, etc., to make it even more beneficial. I went to the village for a week and used the soap with the added ingredients, and after a few days, I saw an improvement in my skin. Excited by the results, I created a bathing gel using the soap that helps with acne, skin rashes, uneven skin tone, and more.I brought a few samples of the gel back to Accra, and the feedback I received was positive, which led to the birth of RO NATURALS. We launched our organic skincare line in November 2021, and the response has been incredible. I am proud to have turned my personal struggle into a successful business that benefits others.

Since launching RO NATURALS, I have been able to make an impact in the skincare industry in Ghana by promoting the use of natural ingredients in skincare products. As an entrepreneur, I have faced challenges along the way, such as finding reliable suppliers for the ingredients and marketing the brand on a limited budget. However, I have persevered and continue to learn and grow as a business owner. In addition to running RO NATURALS, I am also passionate about giving back to my community.

I have organized workshops to educate young girls on the importance of self-care and natural skincare, as well as provided mentorship and internship opportunities to young people interested in entrepreneurship. My advice to anyone starting a business is to believe in yourself and your vision, stay focused, and never give up. It's important to do thorough research and have a clear understanding of the market and your target audience. It's also essential to be resilient and adaptable, as challenges and setbacks are inevitable in entrepreneurship.

Overall, I am grateful for the journey that has led me to where I am today, and I am excited to continue making a positive impact in the skincare industry and beyond.

What were the biggest initial hurdles you faced and how did you overcome them?

My journey has been filled with hurdles, such as liquidity, lack of support from friends, convincing people to choose my product, constant inflation, and import duties. Despite these challenges, I cleared my personal account to start my business with the goal of competing in the international market. A lot of effort went into branding, and I am determined to become known worldwide in the coming years. However, a hurtful comment from a friend continues to motivate me to do more and do better.

As someone who has been in the skincare industry for a while, I have noticed that many people want to bleach their skin, which is saddening. It's concerning to hear customers express their desire to become fair, but it provides my team and me with the opportunity to educate them on the importance of maintaining their original skin complexion. We believe that organic skincare, with patience and consistency, can help anyone achieve healthy and glowing skin.

What advice do you have for young people locally and internationally who are just starting out in their careers or pursuing their passions?

Here are my key lessons and advise:

- Don't start a business expecting support from friends; it's often strangers who help your business grow.

- Success doesn't happen overnight; it takes time, commitment, and dedication. Focus on progress over perfection.

- Entrepreneurship requires resilience; it's not for the faint-hearted.

- Despite the challenges, the fulfillment of building and growing your own business is worth it.

- The journey may be tough, but you are tougher and capable of overcoming any obstacles.

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