Cameroonian Entrepreneur Caroline Sack Kendem Recognized By US Embassy’s African Women Entrepreneurship Program

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ENTERPRISE54 – “From the time I was 10 or 12, I knew I would be in the textile industry,” said Caroline Sack Kendem. “I was very much attracted by fashion.” Kendem is chief executive of Ligne Rouge, a consulting firm in Yaoundé, Cameroon, that specializes in textiles and agricultural exports. She recently started a second company, Rouge Papaye Lingerie.
She plans to visit the U.S. in August as part of the African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program, an initiative sponsored by the U.S. Department of State to increase African trade regionally and to U.S. markets, and to boost African businesswomen’s capacity to improve their communities.

Kendem’s lingerie brand, launched in Paris, will be introduced in Cape Town, South Africa; Tokyo; New York; and Berlin within the year. Kendem is not only in charge, she is like an elder sister to her 15 workers, helping them hone skills to improve their incomes so they can pay for their children’s education.

The African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program will bring 40 women to Washington during the first week of August and will include a visit to a trade fair, where the entrepreneurs can network. A decade from now, Kendem hopes to see her brand become “a big international player in lingerie and accessories.”

Women who have been involved in the program in earlier years have valued the chance to connect with other African businesswomen as much as the chance to visit the U.S. In August, Kendem will meet Zohra Baraka, founder of Mohazo Limited, a maker of home-décor items and jewelry based in Nairobi, Kenya. Mohazo sells to U.S. retailers.


Editor’s note: This piece first appeared on Yaounde US Embassy



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