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I See Life As A School – Jibarang

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Mupalngnyi Kani Jibarang is an indigene of Plateau State and Ngas by tribe. She was born into the family of Mr and Mrs Kani Jibarang, second of five children. She had her nursery and primary education at Little Angels Private School, Jos, Plateau State while she received her secondary education at Demonstration Secondary School and St Paul’s College, both in Jos, Plateau State. She later studied Mass Communication at NTA Television College, Rayfield, Jos. She has been in the fashion business for six years.

Background

My name is Mupalngnyi Kani Jibarang from Kanke Local Government area of Plateau State and Ngas by tribe. I was born into the family of Mr and Mrs Kani Jibarang who are civil servants on 27th July 1992 at VOM Christian Hospital, Riyom, Plateau State. I am the second of five children. I started my educational career at Little Angels Private School, Jos, Plateau State. From there, I proceeded to Demonstration Secondary School and concluded at St Paul’s College also in Jos because I was raised there. After my Secondary Education, I went further to obtain a Diploma in Television Journalism at the NTA Television College, Rayfield, Jos. Due to my quest for knowledge, I didn’t stop there as I enrolled for a Diploma in Computer Technology at the COCIN Computer Training Centre in Jos. While undergoing the computer training, I applied for a direct entry at NTA Television College, which came through, and I was able to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communication. I am presently a student of the University of Jos studying Conflict Management and Peace Studies (MSc). I am an entrepreneur and sole owner of Alchemilla’s Apparel, a name I chose with the support of my sister.

Alchemilla is a flower, which means ‘Ladies’ mantle’, while apparel means clothing. I noticed girls; ladies and women who appear smart, classy and stylish are often very confident, authoritative and carry themselves in high esteem, which is why Alchemilla Apparel signifies the power of a woman through her appearance.

How It All Started

I started the business as a 200 level student. Back then I had a roommate whose aunt was based in Lagos and I used the opportunity to send her money to purchase goods ranging from shoes, bags, jewellery and cloths. I followed this trend of purchase till I got to my final year in school. Traveling to Lagos for the first time is not an experience I will forget in a hurry, all I could see was a large crowd of uninteresting and not too nice people but after a number of visits to the Balogun Market where I usually shop, I was able to develop a good relationship with some sellers and also got an agent who could send me items on order. So, from late 2011 till last year, I was operating the mobile shop and in the year 2017, I started Online Marketing with customers making payment before delivery and in three to five working days, I get it delivered.

What Is Your Driving Force?

My passion for fashion, style and class inspired me to start up the business. Another reason was having friends and passers-by who always appreciated my looks, so I felt I could help others look good as well. When I decided to explore Online Marketing, I was not stable in town so my cousin always helped out with the deliveries though he later left for an engagement. At the moment, I work with Johnson as my agent from Lagos, Paul does my weigh bill and Ibrahim Ayuba, who happens to be my neighbour, does the delivery. I would say I am a boss because directly or indirectly, I engage people in my chain of business (she laughs).

Who Taught You?

As I said earlier, my drive was the love for fashion, style and class.

What Sets You Apart From Competitors?

It is basically my choice of goods, then availability and willingness to offer my services the best way I can. A customer once said to me, ‘I’ll buy more because you are friendly, humble and easy going’.  And many of such remarks make me want to be better. I am blessed with friends who patronise and give referrals which has been the sweetest part of the online business. I usually appreciate my customers as they play a vital role in my success story.

Mentors

My parents are a pair and indeed they, being two have become one. These beautiful amazing gifts from God are a strong couple whose love, devotion and sacrifice know no bound. Despite the challenges of life that they have been made to face, still face and would face, I am assured they will continue to endure, persevere and come out strong. So, yes! They are my mentors and I hold them closer to my heart.

Hobbies

Travelling, eating, writing, chatting, meeting new friends, trying new things and research.

Inspiration

I am inspired by good energy. This simply means when people appreciate or applaud me, I crave to do even more.

Dreads

My main fear is fear itself, but I have come to understand that in life you can only succeed if you take risk, but then it has to be a calculated risk. Everything in life involves risk and not taking a decision is also a risk and even worse, it is a risk to fail.

Achievements

I am self-employed and an employer.

Challenges

I started the business with as low as thirty thousand naira, which was then part of my pocket money, but to God be the glory, I make orders of almost one hundred thousand naira weekly though it has not been easy as there have been ups and downs. It was an opening to the wider life, meeting diverse people with different beliefs and behaviours. So, I thought it wise to work first on myself. I became more friendly, less temperamental, more precise and truthful about happenings and a whole lot.

Finance will always be the major setback because for every business, there is a great desire and need for expansion so that one can also be an employer of labour.

Regrets

I can only wish I started earlier and had a good business education because with that, I would have grown beyond now. But life is an endless institution and I am open to learn and grow every day. All I can say is I have learnt well and can’t stop learning to be better.

Future Projection

I see myself as a big distributor or wholesaler in a few years from now in areas like Jos, Kaduna, Abuja, Bauchi and other neighbouring states. Next year, by God’s grace, I’ll be a CEO after the completion of my brand registration and store, which would reduce the stress of having to be on my phone or system for almost 24hours to respond to customers. I also want to see myself going to the United Kingdom, Dubai, China and other countries to buy goods.

Most Memorable Day

The day I finished my degree examinations. It was a celebration that cannot be erased.

How Do You Balance Business, Profession With Family Life

Well, it is always family first before anything else, then friends come in. For my profession, it is something I can do at leisure. My major concentration is building up on the business.

Advice

The 21st century man is looking up to a strong, independent, reliable, successful and hardworking woman. Equip yourself for the world has changed, first, for your benefit then to those that may come in contact with you. Don’t give up, never quit trying, don’t be discouraged, and don’t let culture or tradition tie your potentials down, fight to be known through your most unique offer to the world. God bless all those women who have chosen sleepless nights to succeed in Nigeria, the North and Plateau State.



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