Waste, dirt or trash collection, whichever name you give it has become a lucrative business in Africa. One of the characteristics of waste collection in developing third world is that they end up forming huge pyramids in their collection sites. The effect is hazardous to man, aquatic animals and birds when they are not properly disposed.
Improper waste disposal has in the years turn out to be one of a challenge around the world. According to the World Bank Urban Development Series Report, about 70 million tons of waste is been produced yearly across African countries and by the year 2025 if the waste are still not properly handled, the production of waste has been proven to reach about 160 million tons because of the speedy growth in the African economy and urbanization.
One for the amazing factor of waste production in Africa is that, the waste can be recycled. This is where the business comes in. New products can be made from these waste products.
However, because of the lack of a proper waste disposal system such as a legal dump site, a proper drainage and others, only 10%of the waste produced are been recycled leaving the rest littered around streets.
Having a waste collection and recycling company is an awesome idea. This is because the company is bound to make huge profit after collection and recycling. In the western world, we have so many multi-billion companies who are involved in this business. However this idea has been bought by some Africans who has seen the positive part of waste collection.
SoleRebels Footwear company has been among the most fast-growing and well known African footwear brand in the world today. The brand sells not only in Africa but also in over 50 developed countries which includes Switzerland, Canada, USA and Japan among all.
Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu the owner and founder of SoleRebels Footwear is among those who saw the usefulness of waste products and utilized it. She barely started with less than $10,000, which she got from some friends and family members. Bethlehem was born and raised Zenabwork found in the heart of Addis Ababa, a poor village in Ethiopia.
Her footwear is designed and crafted by highly experienced craftsmen with a 101% recycled waste materials produced from her locality such as clothes, tyres from abandoned cars and local handmade fabrics..
Looking at the achievement of this entrepreneur over the years, Bethlehem has been become a wealthy entrepreneur, who has been interviewed by CNN and BBC and even found a spot on the Forbes list. She has been nominated for the Young Global Leader at the Economic Forum and has won the African Award For Entrepreneurship.
Few years ago, SoleRebels was certified by the World Trade Fair Organization and was the first footwear company to be certified by the organization around the world.
Bethlehem has successfully set up a world-class footwear company that has been recognized internationally. She runs her business across the borders of Africa, and has successfully started retail outlets in Europe, North America and Asia.