Beauty Entrepreneur Ronke Ige

Ronke Ige
Emi & Ben and Bread + Butter Communications

Ronke Ige is the serial entrepreneur behind Emi & Ben, a natural skin care company, and Bread + Butter, a full service PR & Marketing consultancy providing services to clients within the entertainment, lifestyle and charity sector.

Ronke enjoys spending her time working as an ambassador for young people’s charity The Prince’s Trust in addition to working as an Enterprise Ambassador and Speaker.

Ronke was interviewed by the students of St Philomena’s Catholic High School for Girls as part of the Twenty Ten Club’s “Interview an Entrepreneur” school programme.

What or who inspired you to become an entrepreneur? (Holly, 13 years)
My parents, they were both from hardworking Nigerian backgrounds and I also get motivation from my six year old daughter.

How did you become an entrepreneur? (Lucia, 13 years)
Having worked in the PR industry for several years, in 2005 I decided to leave my job as an Account Manager at a leading PR agency and go it alone to become a freelance PR Consultant. During this time I was lucky enough to secure my own clients across the fashion and entertainment industry.

A few years later I had a ‘light bulb’ moment to start my second business and create a natural skin care brand, after receiving a block of raw Shea butter from my Grandmother in Nigeria. This is when my real entrepreneurial journey started.

What was your first entrepreneurial experience as a child? (Chelsea, 14 years)
Novelty Clocks. We entered a business enterprise scheme at school and I was the MD and in charge of marketing. It was a good product and it taught all involved the importance of team work. We went onto win the national competition.

Did your college education change your future hopes in anyway? (Lucia, 13 years)
My careers advisor at school was not very helpful. They used to tell me that I would be a great television children’s presenter! I wanted to work in the music industry as a publicist however they didn’t really provide me with any guidance on how to achieve this. I decided to complete a business A- level as I knew I would run my own business one day and then went onto do a Marketing degree at university. Whilst there I secured a work experience position at a London PR agency which went led to them offering me the job during the summer holidays.

Would you change anything about your job and if so what? (Niamh, 14 years)
The only thing I would change is to have more time to start other projects that I have bubbling away in my mind!

What advice would you give to a young person wanting to start their own business? (Nora, 13 years)
Make it your mission to gain experience in the career that you wish to pursue. For example, if you want to be a writer, start a blog on an area of interest and become a specialist within your field in order to gain experience.

To get where you are now what obstacles, if any, did you have to overcome? (Rebeca, 13 years)
Self sabotage, being scared to come out of my comfort zone to expand my business. One of my favourite quotes is “feel the fear and do it anyway.”

What does success mean to you? (Chelsea, 14 years)
Testimonials from clients and people I have met and when people recommend me.

What do you think being an entrepreneur has brought to your life? (Georgia, 14 years)
I now know that I can do anything. If I apply myself and remain focused and dedicated I can do most things. I’ve learned if you don’t know how, you can still find a way.

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For more information on the Twenty Ten Club’s Interview an Entrepreneur school programme visit www.twentytenclub.com/school-programme

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