Nigerian entrepreneur Chekwas Okafor is the founder and CEO of ONYCHEK.com, an e-commerce platform for luxury fashion from Africa.
The creation of ONYCHEK.com was inspired by a simple, yet magnificent idea: To showcase and promote the luxury African fashion to the rest of the world. ONYCHEK aims to be the leading retail portal for African fashion and is building a reputation for stocking only the best of African couture from some of the continent’s most celebrated designers.
Chekwas Okafor recently spoke to me about how ONYCHEK plans to export African luxury to the world.
Tell us about your personal and professional background.
My name is Chekwas Okafor, founder and CEO of ONYCHEK.com, an ecommerce platform for luxury fashion from Africa. In 2009, I moved to the US to study at Voorhees College, a HBCU located in Denmark, South Carolina, where I completed my BS degree in Biology/ Environmental Science. Upon graduation, I worked in a building material manufacturing company in the environmental, health and safety function for ~4 years. I then launched ONYCHEK.com in September of 2016.
You seem to have bounced around disciplines before getting into fashion. How did that happen?
Prior to college and pretty much anything substantial I was going to do with my life, it was clear to me that I was going to spend most of my time creating value in Africa. Although I was working in corporate America, I always knew that was temporary. I was just waiting for the right idea.
In 2014, a friend showed me some Nigerian made clothing that were phenomenal and I questioned why the mainstream didn’t know about this. Once I made the connection of how much value can be created by making fashion locally, it was evident that I would be doing this for a long time. Two years later, I launched ONYCHEK.com to make African luxury fashion easily accessible to the world.