By Yolanda Wessels
Founder and CEO Anda Muofhe says when she was doing her degree in Earth Sciences, she became aware of the high unemployment rate in our country. “I did not want to become part of it. Coupled with my purpose to help others, I felt entrepreneurship would be a perfect platform to help myself and others.”
The hygiene and cleaning Industry is proven to be a significant employer, with Vogue Hygiene’s main focus of employment on female empowerment. 66% of their supervisors and team leaders are female. Of these, 50% did not have formal education and were sent for professional training by Vogue Hygiene. Out of the 96 employees, more than 80 of them live in poor communities and have family members that depend on them for financial support.
Whenever there is a new project, Vogue Hygiene has selection criteria for employment where individuals in the surrounding communities are unemployed. Anda says, “We focus on individuals with disadvantaged backgrounds but have the potential for development that can have a significant improvement on their lives and their dependents.”
Berenice Westmore, Anda’s business mentor, says, “the business has a strong focus on job creation, inspiring people to start their own businesses and make a difference in their communities. This will go a long way towards building the economy as well. Having such a large staff complement comes with its own challenges as the managing team is fairly small. Hence systems and processes, regular training, continuous communication, and hands-on quality control all become extremely important. Technology, such as WhatsApp is handy when communicating to a large number of staff like ours; this helps in handling issues quickly.”
This is not the first business Anda has started, initially she set up a call centre that focused on tracing services, mostly for debt recovery. The COVID-19 pandemic closed it down, but Anda decided not to give up on her entrepreneurship spirit, she focussed on a different industry. “This led to the venture into a hygiene business. I am passionate about the environment, and I took it upon myself to help keep our environment clean.”
Vogue Hygiene renders sustainable cleaning services, hygiene services, and healthcare risk waste management. They install and service washroom equipment, including sanitary bins. Anda says they are not just implementing a service; they are empowering individuals with knowledge.
“We help our clients to better manage healthcare risk waste. Our employees must understand the purpose of what we do and that our clients feel valued.”
Currently, Vogue Hygiene manages the hygiene services at large buildings such as the large Transnet buildings at the Foreshore, PRASA offices, many of the City of Cape Town’s Libraries as well as local colleges and churches.
Anda’s advice to other aspiring entrepreneurs is to be resilient. “Anyone seeking to join this path must remove the mindset of being a ‘boss’ and focus on the impact on society and serving others. Being hands-on has helped me when implementing strategies and tackling challenges with a better understanding of what happens on the ground. It takes a disciplined person to grow from nothing to something. Always have a good relationship with your clients and suppliers and remember, communication is key.”
Vogue Hygiene, now a subsidiary of Vogue Exchange (Pty) Ltd, is a 100% black woman-owned Cape Town company offering environmentally friendly cleaning and hygiene services. They are also creating many job opportunities, a huge feat for such a small business at the early growth stage.
021 949 8322