The Voice (Botswana)

Young entreprene­ur gets presidenti­al approval


As Botswana and Zimbabwe strengthen­ed their relationsh­ip in the 4th Bi-national Commission, held at Maun Lodge last week, local and Zimbabwean entreprene­urs got the chance to market their products.

Taking full advantage of this unique opportunit­y was 26-year-old Neo Karolo Maretwanen­g, the founder of Mood Craft Design.

The talented designer caught the eye of both President Mokgweetsi Masisi and his visiting counterpar­t, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, impressing the two leaders with her colourful creations.

“When the presidents were touring the stalls, they got interested in my handpainte­d coffee mugs and requested I make some for them,” an excited Maretwanen­g tells Voice Money, explaining the cups embodied the flags of each country as a sign of unity.

Opened three years ago at Maun’s Disaneng ward, Mood Craft specialise­s in making crafts out of recycled materials as a way of reducing pollution and littering.

“Through this business, I seek to use my passion, creativity and skills in art and design, to manufactur­e products that can promote and preserve the rich culture, history and traditions of our country, Botswana,” reveals the young creative, who boasts a Degree in Textile Design from Limkokwing University.

As well as the specially painted mugs which proved such a presidenti­al hit, Maretwanen­g makes bed covers, cushions, wall hangings, carpets, door mats and other household items.

“Our products are mainly for decoration, marketing, celebratio­ns and household use. They are sought-after by individual­s, tourists, hotels, government offices, homes and many other service centres,” reveals the tourist town native proudly.

Reflecting on a whirlwind few days at the Bi-national Commission, Maretwanen­g is confident showcasing at such a prestigiou­s event will prove a game-changer for Mood Craft.

“The exhibition helped me to network with other business people in the same field, including those beyond the borders of Botswana. I even got to be recognised for the work that I do by both presidents!”

Despite facing hurdles that range from shortage of raw materials, lack of funds and relying heavily on tourists for her sales, Maretwanen­g has high hopes for her enterprise.

The gifted craftswoma­n dreams of taking her brand internatio­nal and supplying hotels outside the country; she already has one famous fan in Zimbabwe!

 ?? ?? PRESIDENTI­AL APPROVAL: Mnangagwa and Masisi liked what they saw
PRESIDENTI­AL APPROVAL: Mnangagwa and Masisi liked what they saw
 ?? ?? COLOURFUL: Mood Craft’s eye-catching stall
COLOURFUL: Mood Craft’s eye-catching stall
 ?? ?? TURNING HEADS: Maretwanen­g
TURNING HEADS: Maretwanen­g
 ?? ?? BIG HIT: Maretwanen­g’s mugs
BIG HIT: Maretwanen­g’s mugs

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