I am a Soweto born eCommerce manager who has worked for some of the largest retailers in South Africa.
I started my career as a beauty buyer until I moved down from Joburg to Cape Town and entered the world of eCommerce, first within the beauty space for a fashion startup and eventually working for a large fashion retailer as an eCommerce and digital marketing manager.
After years of managing eCommerce stores I was disturbed by the enormous volumes of unsold inventory that we faced at the end of every season, and our targets were to sell more & cheaper each year.
This culture of overconsumption really started burning a hole in my conscience and I started thinking of ways that we could share clothes rather than always buying new.
During hard lockdown in 2020, I started cleaning out my closet, and had the idea of building a community where we shop from each other’s closets.
We can extend the life of the garments that are already in circulation, instead of having to go into a store to shop for an item someone already has and hardly worn.
I started building WISI-Oi Marketplace (which stands for WEAR IT. SELL IT. OWN IT.) and sold my own clothes, about 60 items and received great success. My best friend Gill, also an avid conscious consumer added her clothes, we sold those too.
Today we have hundreds of sellers selling thousands of styles and earning an income through opening up their closets to South Africa.
What gives me the greatest fulfilment is the empowerment opportunities that the business offers, where sellers can earn an extra income just by selling good quality garments that are hanging in their closets.
WISI-Oi is not just a resale marketplace, we are a community of creative, fun, mindfully fashionable consumers that digitise the culture of shared fashion.
- Phumi Körber - Founder