Osumah Victoria is a budding young SHE-EO who runs two businesses, “The Gallivanter Traventures and Alexandrite Apparel”. She is a 25-year-old student of philosophy and public affairs at the University of Ibadan. Victoria grew up never wanting to be dependent on her parents. She always wanted to work and earn money for herself.
Back in secondary school, she started her entrepreneurship journey without even realising it. Victoria attended CDSS Ikeja, and In SS2, she started teaching other command schools, dance (cheerleading), for events in school, and other primary schools around where she lived. She was teaching because she wanted to share her knowledge and help others improve, and she made money for herself through it. Straight out of secondary school, she worked as a hostess for events, and then she went to a Fashion school.
Victoria has always been interested in sightseeing and adventures; it’s no wonder she set up a tours and adventures company called The Gallivanter Traventures. “I was always the child that was never at home because I was working somewhere, my friends used to call me “Google map” because I practically knew every corner of Lagos… I enjoyed going out to work in new places and finding new adventures. I get really excited when the venue for an event is a new location; I go there really early before work sometimes and explore. Working at events built my love for sightseeing, then I took it seriously and started going out purely to sightsee and explore new places.”
Attending fashion school definitely paid off for Victoria, as she also established a Tulle clothing line called Alexandrite Apparel. We were intrigued by the idea of a tulle focused clothing line and, we sought to know what inspired it.
“I love dramatic outfits, and Tulle gives the right avenue for that twist and drama. I realize that most people have subpar tulle outfits, and I’m trying to change that and normalize the idea of wearing tulle. I also want to show the beauty and charisma that Tulle gives. Alexandrite Apparel is presently going back to the drawing board and rebranding to give the best TULLE TWISTS.”
Starting a business, much less two, is not as easy as it sounds. It takes a lot of time and effort, and it certainly requires some level of business knowledge. Victoria walks us through how she started, from the ideation process to establishing her businesses.
“Starting these businesses was not much of a challenge because I had already acquired the knowledge needed. For the tour company, it started with me just putting together a list of places that I would love to visit in my spare time and as time passed people showed interest and wanted to explore with me. I came to realize that most people couldn’t plan and execute tours on their own; they couldn’t enquire or do the right preparations by themselves. I decided to help, and because of my prior knowledge in the event industry, it’s easy for me to plan and put together an event and tour successfully.
For Alexandrite Apparel, I had always loved to make twists to my own outfits and saw that people appreciated them and looked forward to more. So I decided to put it out there for other women because they also deserve to look good, be complimented and appreciated.”
Starting up any business venture comes with challenges, that fact; is heightened by the Nigerian factor. Victoria shared with us some of the challenges she faced as an entrepreneur.
“For most entrepreneurs in Nigeria, especially business that needs an online presence, getting people to trust you to deliver, just because you are a startup and new to it is a major struggle. For travel companies, the insecurity issues in the country at this time is a hindrance to our level of tour and exploration. For my fashion brand, the problem is getting the best quality fabric at an affordable price to meet every pocket and sometimes the continuous availability of these fabrics; especially if you are going into the ready-to-wear sector of fashion.”
Every new business owner has fears that sometimes keep them awake at night. For Victoria, she fears if she is providing what people really need, she also worries if people understand the value she’s providing and if her products and services are affordable. Even though she has these fears, she doesn’t let them overpower her by tackling them head-on. “I deal with these by always trying to communicate with people; I ask what they want and how I can do better. I listen to their suggestions, complaints and things they are interested in. Then I take actions to make the company better.”
Victoria has planned some interesting tours, so we asked her to give us a rundown; on how she plans/organizes a tour.
“Planning a tour is the simplest thing if you know what you are doing and the hardest if you don’t. Planning a tour requires getting the right information about accommodation, transportation and every other thing that’s needed on the trip. Putting them all together and creating a budget for the trip. I take away the stress of planning and help you explore and have fun at a budget-friendly rate.”
As most would know, marketing is key to the success of any enterprise. To market her brand, Victoria targets people who are eager to explore, people who understand and appreciate travelling and sightseeing and most importantly, who are looking for exciting and fun ways to spend their leisure time. Once she finds this set of people, she makes the right plans and puts out all the details in a flyer. According to her, social media is the best place to find and market these people. She says, “once the right information is pushed out with all the right details to ignite their exploring spirit, the right people will come.”
In case you’re wondering, Victoria filled us in on the services her businesses provide.
“THE GALLIVANTER TRAVENTURES specializes in planning tours and travels, events and fun hangouts, picnics, paint and sip events, planning of corporate retreats and time bonding activities, weekend and honeymoon getaways, providing games and MC’s for bridal showers, baby showers and other intimate events.
ALEXANDRITE APPAREL is a growing fashion brand that provides tulle outfits for all women, and we are ready to dig into your creativity to design whatever tulle outfit any woman desires.”
When she’s not travelling or sewing, Victoria loves to watch a movie alone, try out new foods, surf through the internet to find new styles and trends, and hang out with friends. When asked about her secret to juggling two businesses in Nigeria, she replies. “The secret to juggling two businesses is the love I have for them. Loving what I do makes it totally easy to make these businesses work. And also making sure I am always well informed, staying updated and evolving with the world and coming trends.”
On what’s next for her businesses, she responds. “For The Gallivanter Traventures, we’ll keep building and move to provide amazing fun-filled events, vacations and tours, not just Nigeria but bringing people together to tour and see the beauty of the world. For Alexandrite apparel, we would be making ready-to-wear tulle outfits that fit the taste of every woman, and in time every woman can explore the world, wearing AA tulle outfits”.
Finally, for entrepreneurs who are also just starting, Osumah Victoria shared some advice. “To young entrepreneurs just starting up, put in your best and keep going, don’t compare or judge others success with your progress, keep going. Always be open to learning and correction. Just keep doing what you do with love, and follow the right processes. Your space at the top is right there for you.”