Meet & Greet Edition – Episode 4
This week, Naya’s column takes a different twist. We ventured into the world of fashion and style to have a chit chat with a top mogul in the industry. We are elated to introduce the CEO of as the first ever female to feature on our blog.
With a degree in Economics and Law and a LLM in Corporate Finance Law from the University of Westminster, one would wonder why Claudia would skip a well paying job in the Banking sector to be a part of a fashion industry which could be perfectly described as ‘dead’ back then. But Claudia with her strong passion for fashion, pushed further to create Glitz Magazine which has become a household name in Africa today.
Back in the UK, she worked with Santander Bank for four years as their savings specialist and grew to become a financial adviser for the Bank. She relocated to Ghana five years ago with the intention of furthering her career in Banking. Looking at the fact that she was about starting a family, she saw the need to look for something flexible to make time for family.
She stated, “When I moved to Ghana, I was about starting my family and was looking for something different to do but was quite at sea. My husband once asked what I missed most about the UK and I answered, reading fashion magazines and bowling. Truth is, I am a lover of magazines and other journals which tend to give vivid details about fashion and style. At a certain point in my life in the UK, I worked part-time as a personal shopper and a stylist at top fashion houses. There I helped random people to pick and shop for the right clothes so I think that is where the idea began. In addition, I realized that in Ghana the stories published in magazines and news papers on people in the fashion, entertainment and style industry were not being told the way they were supposed to. It was either over exaggerated or under written and then I said to myself, the paper or magazine could have done much better in writing about these individuals because I noticed that, what was published contradicted to the actual lives of these personalities to the extent that you couldn’t get a better picture of what otherwise could have been perfect. Also in Ghana, people who have been able to make a certain level of impact were not celebrated like they were supposed to unlike in Nigeria and South Africa. I love to celebrate and appreciate good things and so observing all of these facts pushed me to want to create something on my own and that led to the birth of Glitz Africa.”
The mother of three added that, the consistency of Glitz Africa Magazine has paid off and all Africans can bear witness to the hard work that goes into each edition of the magazine. Loyal readers of Glitz Africa can attest to the massive growth from the very first edition to the 15th edition.
“Money was not the main aim of running the company” she said, “no one is made to pay a dime to be featured on the cover of my magazine. Here at glitz, we aspire to inspire and so if we see that your life story is inspiring enough and worth being shared with the rest of the world then we take you on. This is my passion and I love what I do, so I put my all in it and intend to give my readers nothing but the best because I know they are always looking forward to new, exciting and inspiring editions of Glitz Magazine.”
Touching more on her educational background, Claudia was the Senior Girls’ Prefect back in Anglican Secondary School in Kumasi where she was raised. She then pursued to Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), which she described as a ‘major throwback’. At KNUST she was elected as the entertainment chairperson for Africa Hall and was crowned ‘Miss KNUST’ in 2001. She also took part in organizing the annual pageant on campus.
“I wanted to add a few touches to the pageant to make it better because I realized the participation had gone down in our time. I remember coming to Accra to seek sponsorship from ATL and other organizations, I managed to get Kwami sefa Kayi on board to Mc the event. Batman (now samini), Sony Achiba and Bukbak also came to perform that night and it was simply amazing. Till date, some people still say it was the best beauty pageant ever to be organized in the history of KNUST. There, I realized that I had the passion for events, fashion, entertainment and style; so with my expertise, an amazing team and a supportive husband behind me, I was able to create and manage Glitz Africa.”
In 2014, Claudia emerged as the overall winner of the British Council’s Young Creative Entrepreneur (YCE) Fashion and Design Award.
Delving into her upbringing; her parents made sure they (herself and her four siblings) had the very best in life. They went through good schools and had very good parental support. “There were rough times” she said, “but my parents did well not to disclose their issues to us. Our duties as their kids were to focus on our books, go to school regularly to become the ‘go-getters’ we are today. We did face some challenges here and there but I only saw them as blessings in disguise because in the end, they pushed me to become who I am today.”
Claudia is a lover of all colors but pink. At her leisure times, she works out at the gym or watch movies at home with her children while having some popcorn, cereal or juice on the side. She attributed her ability to manage her home and company to ‘proper time management and prioritization’. Indeed, she is a super woman.
Advising the youth, “Do what you love to do and enjoy doing it. Allocate your time and attention to the things you love if not, you’ll end up cheating yourself. Find your passion and give your best while at it and remember that there is a Supreme Being who watches over us and we need to pay attention to Him.”
To cap it all, I would say that, being a woman is One of Claudia’s strongest tool. She is defined by her passion for education, women, fashion and humanity in general. She is full of energy and pursues whatever she believes in.
Do well to grab the latest copy (15th edition) of Glitz Africa Magazine today and enjoy!
Listen to the audio below for the full interview.
By: Nana Yaa Asabea
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