Name: Angelina Bey
Industry: Consumer Goods
Location: Jackson, Tennessee, U.S.
Reason for starting: I started LeAngelle out of necessity. I was pregnant with my 5th child and experienced hassle from my employer regarding my FMLA. I was out of a job, and literally had about a hundred dollars in the bank; but I wasn’t out of hope and I didn’t lack skill. I’m a former Massage Therapist and healthcare administrator so I used these skills to launch my own line of therapeutic grade all natural bath and body products which also included a line of soy candles. I began doing a few vendor shows and would sell out of the products I brought and realized the grand potential of my brand.
I looked int the eyes of my very young children who are now 2 years old and 9 months and I just couldn’t let them down. I was finding it difficult to get a job here in Tennessee after having submitted countless resumes and applications for a variety of positions in and outside of the healthcare sector. I had to go for it. I had to start building LeAngelle into a solid and profitable business.
Related: Read about another mompreneur here.
How do you define success? I define success as a measurement of faith and will. Believing in yourself enough to try and the willingness to pursue the faith you have in yourself.
So, I began being as resourceful as possible and started going door to door in the business district offering to make candles for their business as a way to promote their business. In my networking, I was able to gain sales which created a stream of income that supported my business supplies. Since advertising was too expensive, I began hosting small house parties to promote my products. Then my husband lost his job, and his income is what backed my operations, so again, I find myself in a position of necessity because working for someone else has no guarantees.
Biggest Success: My biggest success is when I began.
What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it? My biggest challenge is visibility. Advertising and getting the word out about my business. I have addressed this by going door to door, introducing myself to other local businesses, speaking to anyone who would listen to me about my business. Offering my products as idea solutions to other small businesses. Hanging flyers in local colleges, networking with colleges to build a entrepreneurial presence amongst the student body. So I am a foot soldier for my brand. I am a walking, talking breathing, living vessel for LeAngelle. If you love candles and pampering experiences, you will love LeAngelle. If you want to take the guess work out of gift giving, give LeAngelle. Candles are the #1 most appreciated gift according to gift giving articles and the research done by the National Candle Association.
Who is your most important role model? I am. I come from a long line of disadvantaged women. My family is generationally poor and impoverished, so I never was introduced to a real life entrepreneur. I didn’t know what a CEO was, I was never introduced to even the slightest possibility of being my own entity- so I am the first. When I look in the mirror, I get happy because it’s my face that I see and I get to say I know a CEO.
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Edited by The Story Exchange