Businesswomen on the rise #2
Mercy Odhiambo . #knowhername
BP : Welcome Mercy , could you please introduce yourself to our readers ?
MERCY : Sure. My Name is Mercy Odhiambo. I am 30 years old, born in Kenya and grew up in
Germany ( Sauerland). Am currently based in Darmstadt where I studied sociology.
I am passionate about wholistic approaches to life, am an introvert at heart and an
extrovert in my mind lol.
I am obsessed with Avocados, sunsets and the ocean.
BP : We've discovered you through NAFROBOX and Instagram. Since we do not only have
german readers and naturals, could you please explain what NAFROBOX means and represent ?
MERCY : NAFROBOX is the No. 1 Beauty Subscription Box for the Afro - European Woman in
Germany, Swiss and Austria.
We introduce you to the best Cosmetic and Lifestyle products in the market that are
suitable for you. NAFROBOX is a personalised and affordable shopping experience for our
customers. We are committed to making their lives easier when it comes to finding the
best products for them.
Every 3 months the Beauty Box is delivered to their doorsteps with 7 new products that
they can try out and enjoy from the comfort of their homes.
The challenge that our customers have been facing for years is the disconnect between
most western brands. There might be a variety of products in the market however these or
most products do not cater to our specific needs and wants.
Our vision is to force more and more brands in Europe to consider our target group and
include them as valid consumers.
We just had a meeting with one of our potential future partners and they weren't even
aware of the fact that African European Women have a different hair texture and that they
import most of their products.
So our vision is to create more awareness on both ends. But more importantly make life
easier for our Nafro Queen in terms of finding her products.
NAFROBOX is therefore a personal gift to yourself. Every 3 months ;)
BP : How is it like to do Business as a Black Woman in Germany?
MERCY : LOL Starting and running your own business in general has its ups and downs. You are faced with new challenges on a daily, NOP... on an hourly basis. Everything that can go
wrong , goes wrong when you least expect it and then there is the constant pressure to
deliver at all times and make your customers happy.
I always say that starting a business has taught me so much about myself, my abilities, my
weaknesses, my fears and my strengths. You have to be open to Personal development.
I constantly have to check my motives, be aware of the fact that there are consequences
to every decision that I make and only I will be held accountable. You are responsible for
everything that goes right and wrong.
That in itself be a lot of pressure at times but you learn to grow a thick skin.
In terms of doing business as a Black Woman in Germany I have come to understand that
perception is sometimes more important than reality. Meaning how I perceive myself will
determine the kind of deals I close. I choose to look at me being black and african as an
advantage in a market that is changing. A market that requires diversity and more feminine
So I have learned to appreciate, love and work with my uniqueness. The fact that I grew
up in this society helps because I am aware of the rules, regulations and standards
required. And if I don't , I make sure I get the information I need for the business to grow.
At the end of the day it all boils down to the kind of information you have access to and
how you use that information to sell your idea/ product or self.
Information and #presentation is everything.
However I often times wish there were more black business women in Germany to mentor
and guide me through this journey. Not to say that no-one else can mentor me, No. I think
it’s important for me as a black woman in Germany to see another black woman in a high position do it. I relate to it differently.
BP : What advice would you give your younger self?
MERCY : Listen to your inner voice more and less to others. They don't know what they are doing
either or where they are going! No, Life is not being extra hard on you...Life loves you and
is teaching you some extra lessons. Appreciate these lessons more because it will all
make sense one day. I promise.
BP : Who is your biggest female icon and why?
MERCY : My Queen Mother!
Now that am older I truly understand the sacrifices she has made for us to live this life of freedom, privilege and abundance!
My Mum was a teen mother. She has gracefully managed to navigate herself through life’s punches, heartbreaks and #challenges. She let go of her dreams, selflessly lived and
breathed for her babies. I live to give her the world.
I am who I am because of my Queen Mother.
I live to become half of the woman she is. Only half....
BP : Thank you Mercy for being part of the first Issue of Black Pepper Magazine. One last question. Do you deliver NAFROBOX internationally ?
MERCY : As for now we only deliver to Germany, Swiss and Austria. More countries will follow in
the coming months.
Subscribe to our newsletter www.nafrobox.de and stay tuned for more information
BP : Thank you very much for your time and support . We wish you all the best for your
business and hope to stay in contact.
Instagram @nafrobox and Facebook @NafroBox . The subscription box is amazing !