Seage dusts herself up in time to begin a rewarding spiritual journey
For many a woman, losing a job would have been considered the beginning of the end, but for Lebogang Boitumelo Seaga, it heralded the journey towards a new destiny – business and philanthropy.
Based in Tembisa, Ekurhuleni, Seaga runs House of KTT, a gift shop, and NtombanaEntle, which manufactures household products that include scented candles, soaps and cosmetics.
In 2020 Seaga lost her job as sales agent at Msebe investment holdings Crushing as it was, she did not allow that setback any space for permanence in her heart, so she quickly dusted herself up and set herself up for the new challenge which has proved to be a double-pronged success.
Living in an area where residents had to travel a few miles to the nearest malls in order to access gift shops, the choice of what type of business to begin with was not a difficult one for Seage. She considered what many locals regarded a challenge as an opportunity to showcase her creativity and thus, launched House of KTT. To her, the business is also a way of practically teaching her children about the importance of giving.
“They should not give with the aim of profits, but also where it’s needed, without getting anything in return,” says the mother of three, adding that NtombanaEntle, which (does cosmetics) was also meant to quench her thirst for luxurious things.
The genesis of NtombanaEntle, loosely translated to mean a “pretty girl”, can be traced to the beginning of her spiritual journey. After she lost her job, Seage says she found herself wanting all the things that made her atmosphere calm all the time; things that also “screamed beauty”. Her love for candles, soaps and reed diffusers grew from here. She says she learnt how to mix all these products to benefit herself spiritually and emotionally whenever she was feeling down. Eventually, she saw the great impact that had on her day-to-day mood wellness.
“After getting compliments about how great my products smelled, I decided to share that bliss with everyone else and that is how I started to supply all the products,” adds Seage, who admits to having challenges of her own in her businesses.
“Just like any other business, the House of KTT and the NtombanaEntle also pose their own daily challenges, but the outbreak of COVID -19 made it even worse, as we now have to adjust to the new normal. At NtombanaEntle, you find customers that place orders but fail to pay, leading to a waste. Sometimes the client decides they will pay on arrival but never pitch. I have however, managed to place some terms and conditions, which include the customer having to pay full price to confirm the package and this has worked to my advantage. As an entrepreneur, my wish is to work with black business that mainly focuses on the items I supply such as flowers and bulk gift boxes.”
She still has space for women empowerment in business.
“If there is a business owned by black women around Tembisa that produces the mentioned products, they can contact me,” she says.
“One of my achievements has been my ability to sustain all my businesses during the pandemic, but I wouldn’t have done it without the support from my customers, even in these trying times. Seeing my businesses flourish even during this pandemic is one of my greatest achievements.”
The success of any business hinges on its ability to expand and Seage seems to have all that within mental touching distance.
“My plans for the future include having a warehouse, where I will be able to push production for all my businesses and to create more jobs, as I only have one driver for now. Working from home can be comfortable but growth is needed,” said the entrepreneur.
“My message to fellow queens out there is: do not be intimidated by what you don’t know. Your fears can be your greatest strength, but ensure that you are doing things differently from everyone else. You are the only one that can limit your ability to dream, so don’t let yourself get in the way.”
She believes she is a spiritually gifted woman and that her journey has taught her a lot, especially on finding her purpose, establishing a set of values, principles and beliefs that give her life meaning, as well as on how to build others, especially women.