From a Banker to Shoemaker: The Entrepreneurial Strides of Frederick Mawuli Degbee

From a Banker to Shoemaker: The Entrepreneurial Strides of Frederick Mawuli Degbee

  • Frederick Mawuli Degbee is the chief executive officer of Heel the World
  • He founded the company in 2010 whilst working as a banker
  • Mawuli Degbee quit his banking job in 2011 to focus on his flourishing shoemaking venture

The idea to start a shoemaking business first came to Frederick Mawuli Degbee when he walked out of a store in Ghana with a new pair of high-end Pierre Cardin shoes.

Stunned by the design, he wondered why local shoemakers were not making such well-crafted designs. He would proceed to ask a local shoemaker outside the store why such shoes were not produced in the nation.

The answer he received sparked a quest to change the narrative that it was ''impossible'' to produce such shoes in Ghana.

From a Banker to Shoemaker: The Entrepreneurial Strides of Frederick Mawuli Degbee
From a Banker to Shoemaker: The Entrepreneurial Strides of Frederick Mawuli Degbee Photo credit: Frederick Mawuli Degbee.
Source: Instagram

Starting Heel the World

Frederick Mawuli Degbee told Ghanatalksbusiness he was surprised when the man outside the store answered that it was impossible to make such bespoke shoes in Ghana.

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''It was almost as if I had asked him about making a spaceship,'' said Frederick. ''But I realised that it fits with a widespread Ghanaian dependency on foreign innovation.''

Mawuli Degbee's entrepreneurship journey to building a successful shoemaking company began whilst working at the bank.

With a committed and hardworking team, he ventured into the field in 2010, subcontracting work to local artisans. As demand for his shoes grew, he quit his banking job in 2011 to focus on his flourishing shoe manufacturing brand, Heel the World.

Company's global impact

Mawuli Degbee believes Heel the World is a company with an impact that reaches beyond Africa.

''Heel the World is more than a shoe company; it is a social enterprise that counters perceptions of the quality and capabilities of Ghanaian craftsmanship,'' he told Ghanatalksbusiness.

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Besides producing shoes, the company also makes wrist beads known as Empowerment Beads.

The Ashesi University alumnus attributes his success to a set of circumstances coming together to favour him, as he believes ''Nobody can do it alone, nobody can take all the glory.''

Meet the Graduate Behind the Snack Brand Sparkxx Foods & Beverages

In a previous story, YEN.com.gh reported that Derrick Yiiyi Annoh, a Ghanaian entrepreneur and business owner, is the brain behind the popular snack brand, Sparkxx Foods & Beverages, a company that produces flavoured packaged chips.

Annoh's quest to leave a legacy and memorial in the sands of time stoked his passion to start his business from his mother's kitchen with a team of trusted friends.

Though he had mouthwatering offers after graduating with a degree in Psychology from the University of Ghana, he turned down the offers to start small in 2017, he said. And gradually made his way up to success.

Source: YEN.com.gh

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