Soweto’s siz­zling sex shop

Soweto’s only adult shop not only about dil­dos but also im­parts well­ness ideas

Sunday World - - Front Page - By Amos Mananyetso man­anyet­[email protected]­day­world.co.za

For those whose bed­room prob­lems might be too small or too big for the Chris Hani Barag­wanath Hos­pi­tal to care about, don’t de­spair.

And even for those who do not be­lieve in the magic of umh­luzu (gravy from cooked cow head meat be­lieved to have aphro­disiac prop­er­ties) from across the road at the taxi rank, there is a new so­lu­tion for your sex night­mares.

Soweto’s sec­ond, but now only adult shop, G-Spot, qui­etly opened its doors last month and, ac­cord­ing to its owner, sales have been swelling.

G-Spot founder and owner Mmath­abo Ndlovu was quick to point out though that she was not only in the busi­ness to make bumper prof­its but was also on a cru­sade to change the per­cep­tions around the busi­ness.

Ndlovu, who set up her swanky shop at the pop­u­lar Irvin Khoza Cen­tre across the road from Africa’s big­gest hos­pi­tal, said she had been toy­ing with the idea for many years but only had the balls to es­tab­lish it this year.

She said while her aim was to pen­e­trate the town­ship mar­ket, she also wanted to ed­u­cate res­i­dents about the im­por­tance of sex­ual health and well­ness.

“If you look at our of­fer­ing, it is not only about sex toys and sex-en­hanc­ing aphro­disi­acs,” she said dur­ing an in­ter­view at the shop this week.

“We also hire out the shop as a party venue for events such as bach­e­lor and bach­e­lorette par­ties, as well as bridal and baby show­ers.

“The tar­get mar­ket in my head is women. I would like this to be a place for women, where they can come and talk about things that they don’t nor­mally get to dis­cuss at wed­dings or around wa­ter cool­ers at the of­fice,” she said.

Ndlovu added: “Sex­ual well­ness is very im­por­tant in many as­pects. It is part of a happy re­la­tion­ship or mar­riage, but it also is part of men­tal health ther­apy. A lot of peo­ple end up suf­fer­ing from de­pres­sion be­cause of prob­lems in the bed­room, most of which are just per­cep­tions.

“So, the sex ed­u­ca­tion part is very im­por­tant. We don’t want to be the shop that just sells dil­dos and in­flat­able dolls, but we want to sell the whole ex­pe­ri­ence.”

Ndlovu, who is mar­ried with two chil­dren, said she hosted her first event at the shop two weeks ago and it was a suc­cess.

“What I did when we started trad­ing is that we de­signed feed­back forms where cus­tomers write down their com­ments or sug­ges­tions.

“So I in­vited some of those cus­tomers as well as some of my friends to a ‘sip-and-see’ event where we just talked about sex­ual well­ness over a glass of wine.

“Most of our cus­tomers are peo­ple who have not been ex­posed to adult shops be­fore, so this event gave them an op­por­tu­nity to see all the prod­ucts we have and ask ques­tions,” she said.

Ndlovu said one of their hot sell­ers is a male sex drive po­tion called Uthando Oluqinile.

“Maybe be­cause our cus­tomers can as­so­ciate with its name.”

She said she fi­nally left her mar­ket­ing job early this year to fo­cus on her new ad­ven­ture.

“I did my re­search, I even looked for own­ers of Soweto’s first adult shop which was opened in 2011 but has since closed down.

“I spoke to one of the own­ers. Af­ter that, I was con­vinced that there was a mar­ket.

“I then went to one of the coun­try’s big play­ers in the mar­ket, Lu­v­land, but they were not in­ter­ested in fran­chis­ing. For­tu­nately, one of their di­rec­tors, Patrick Meyer, agreed to men­tor me and show me the ropes of the in­dus­try.”

Ndlovu, who was born and raised in Rockville in Soweto, said her mother was first shocked at the idea but was now “my big­gest sup­porter”.

“I guess be­cause she is from the old gen­er­a­tion. She was first con­cerned about the ta­boo around this kind of busi­ness. But, as an en­tre­pre­neur her­self, she came to un­der­stand my pas­sion.”

We don’t want to be the shop that just sells in­flat­able dolls and dil­dos, but the whole ex­pe­ri­ence

/Amos Mananyetso

Mmath­abo Ndlovu is the proud founder and owner of G-Spot adult shop which opened it’s doors to Sowe­tans last month.

A range of sex­ual gad­gets.

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