- Frederick Mawuli Degbee is the chief executive officer of Heel the World
- He founded the company in 2010 whilst working as a banker
- Mawuli Degbee quit his banking job in 2011 to focus on his flourishing shoemaking venture
The idea to start a shoemaking business first came to Frederick Mawuli Degbee when he walked out of a store in Ghana with a new pair of high-end Pierre Cardin shoes.
Stunned by the design, he wondered why local shoemakers were not making such well-crafted designs. He would proceed to ask a local shoemaker outside the store why such shoes were not produced in the nation.
The answer he received sparked a quest to change the narrative that it was ''impossible'' to produce such shoes in Ghana.
Starting Heel the World
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Degbee told Ghanatalksbusiness he was surprised when the man outside the store answered that it was impossible to make such bespoke shoes in Ghana.
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"It was almost as if I had asked him about making a spaceship," said Frederick. "But I realised that it fits with a widespread Ghanaian dependency on foreign innovation."
Mawuli Degbee's entrepreneurship journey to building a successful shoemaking company began whilst working at the bank.
With a committed and hardworking team, he ventured into the field in 2010, subcontracting work to local artisans. As demand for his shoes grew, he quit his banking job in 2011 to focus on his flourishing shoe manufacturing brand, Heel the World.
Company's global impact
Mawuli Degbee believes Heel the World is a company with an impact that reaches beyond Africa.
"Heel the World is more than a shoe company; it is a social enterprise that counters perceptions of the quality and capabilities of Ghanaian craftsmanship,'' he told Ghanatalksbusiness.
Besides producing shoes, the company also makes wrist beads known as Empowerment Beads.
The Ashesi University alumnus attributes his success to a set of circumstances coming together to favour him, as he believes "Nobody can do it alone, nobody can take all the glory."
Medical student becomes a shoemaker
Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that a smart young Nigerian lady, Adeosun Goodness Taiye, is making waves as a shoemaker despite being a 400-level dentistry student at the University of Ibadan (UI).
She said she started making shoes in 2018 after she just sat for her Cambridge A levels and was quite bored at home.
After gaining admission into UI as a 200-level student and showcasing her pieces, her classmates loved her work and they asked her to make for them.