Melissa Mbile Sánchez is the founder and CEO of La Capacidad, an Equatorial Guinea-based clothing company. She has been engaged in the following activities while employed by La Capacidad:
“The first is related to textiles—fashion design, garment printing, and, in the future, a fashion house. The second is artistic and cultural, and will involve the establishment of a school in Equatorial Guinea—this is a long-term vision,” she explained to Africa Renewal.
Her foray into the fashion industry began in 2018 with the creation of Afro-contemporary clothing and costumes bearing her company’s logo. Sánchez, who is now in her late twenties, said her fashion business in Malabo, the country’s capital, is thriving.
“Equatorial Guinea is a small oil-producing country, but there is still room for creativity and culture,” she explained, adding, “We take immense pride in our cultural uniqueness, and thus traditional materials will always be cherished among the variety of textures and colors.”
Sánchez self-identifies as a multidisciplinary artist with a keen understanding of economic policies. She holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and has worked on projects analyzing, developing, and supervising.
“I am a fashion designer, a dancer, a choreographer, a singer, and an actress,” the young entrepreneur explained, adding that she is fluent in Spanish, English, and French. “I am a defender of indigenous culture and its global expansion.”
Sánchez’s primary objective at the moment is to empower youth and promote their social and economic inclusion. Thus, her company offers internship opportunities to youth to “enable them to quickly learn and understand the value of work, the importance of customer relations, and efficient service delivery,” she told Africa Renewal.
Last year, she stated that approximately 12 young people gained invaluable experience through the company’s internship program.
Currently, the dancer and CEO are focusing on increasing her national and international visibility. Additionally, she would like to create a marketing and advertising strategy, both virtual and physical. Additionally, Sánchez wishes to establish structures for the fashion house and art school within a year.
Financing her type of business is also difficult, but she believes that things would be better if she could. The singer and fashion designer has urged young people to make a professional impression in whatever they do. “They should work to establish themselves as positive role models for others,” she advised.