By DailyNews Business Correspondent
City Centre Complex, Kampala |DAILYNEWS UG|Bravo Shoes Ltd is a No.1 Market Leader in the manufacturing of Children’s Shoes in Uganda. It is a well-established business that has been trading in children’s leather shoes for the past 14 years. The business started operations in March, 2000 as a small corner kiosk that has over the years grown into a brand for children leather shoes, accessories and other associated foot-wear support products like shoe brushes, strings and polish. Having started off selling a whole range of men’s wear, management eventually distilled out boys’ and girls’ (2.5-18 years) dress and back-to-school leather shoes as products with best market prospects based on recent major changes in the population structure.
Our DailyNewsUg Chief Business Correspondent sat down with the Managing Director/CEO Mr. Yesigye Brian, a very intelligent, Enterprising and Business minded individual for a one-on-one insight on what make Bravo Shoes outstanding and leading the market.
Qn: BRAVO SHOES has been very busy in the Shoes School Market. When did you discover that you had a passion to designing footwear? What were your influences?
Brian: The Shoe dream has been with me since childhood. Throught Secondary School, i was always a Shoe Guy. In fact, a while back when I visited Turkey, i saw a Shoe Maker, an old man with a son that picked interest in me being “black” and the son had started an English course. This boy wanted me to teach him English. He paused me a question “How come you are black and you have white teeth?”. Anyway, from then on we built a relationship and today i am fully fledged into shoes.
Qn: Bravo Shoes are worn by most children in Kampala Schools. What defines the quality of Bravo Shoes in Schools?
Brian: Bravo Shoes are of high quality, 100% leather and very comfortable. Our Market niche is School going Children.
Qn: How has your Shoe Design Work evolved over the years?
Brian: It is through consistency, persistence and perseverance and most of all building a strong brand alongside ethics and integrity.
Qn: Why exactly did you specifically zero in on children foot wear? Why not Ladies Wear or Men’s wear?
Brian: Children shoes are a necessity not a luxury. This field had been abandoned by Manufacturers since our cultures do not value children much, most especially when it comes to quality. People think children as small as they are must not be given quality and actually they are the ones that need it more than big people.
Qn: Where do you procure materials for your Shoe Brand? How do you decide on colors for your shoes?
Brian: We source for our material across the Globe. Most especially from Germany, Turkey, Vietnam and North India. For the colors, being that school shoes in Uganda must be black, we do not have choice of many colours.
Qn: How would you describe your style of Bravo Shoes Brand in the market vis-à-vis the competition?
Brian: We are enjoying 25% market share at the moment and we believe in the next 5 years, we shall have our full 60% share market given the strategic initiatives we have implemented.
Qn: What criteria do you use when designing new shoes?
Brian: Quality control is paramount, the environment and the temperatures are key, the latest fashions especially with the current trends among children
Qn: Of all the shoes that you’ve designed, which has given you the most satisfaction?
Brian: The arthopedic design that’s comfortable for both boys and girls has nailed it.
Qn: Do you talk about your work with other designers – outside of your office?
Brian: Definitely, we have engaged designers from as far as Australia where our designer are even aged 15yrs and they began this while they were 12yrs. In Uganda, we have engaged different people that are involved in designing only that it’s a big challenge identifying some.
Qn: Do you have any superstitious beliefs or self-imposed rules by which you conduct Bravo Shoes Business?
Brian: I have live a positive life all through. I believe that one’s dream is realized over time when fully focused on. Many people have lived a foolish life of superstition and this has led to the collapse of their business. I stay focused and I never what to take in any negativity
Qn: As Shoe manufacturers focus on building the next generation of skilled workers, Bravo Shoes must be no exception. Tell us more about this role and Bravo Shoes involvement in workforce development initiatives.
Brian: We have built a strong system in place, recruited dedicated staff, and ones that have married off the mission of the brand with full commitment to see the success of our Brand. We have fully computerized our systems and everyone is trained in their roles and do not need to consult when taking decisions concerning the brand.
Qn: What is the best moment of the day?
Brian: It’s when I see children dragging their parents to us that it’s only Bravo Shoes they need. This makes us proud of the quality we have provided these years. Parents buy due to pressure from their children but they end up loving the brand to the fullest.
Qn: What kind of music are you listening to at the moment?
Brian: Hahahah! I love Rhumba Congolese music. The likes of Franco, Madill System and Kofi Olomide. Anything Congolese moves me. lol lol
Qn: What books do you currently have on your bedside table?
Brian: “Before you quit your Job” by Robert Kiyosaki, “The story of the Young Entrepreneur” by Gordon Wavamuno & “The Secret” by Byronne
Qn: What’s your personal motto?
Brian: Integrity is key in everything!
BRAVO SHOES GALLERY BELOW