A goal-driven chartered accountant has embarked on an entrepreneurial quest to establish an African Walt Disney World after struggling to find a suitable doll for his five-year-old daughter.
Businessman Meshack Mulaudzi, 31, is the founder of Kaelo Black Beauty, a company that designs, manufactures and distributes Black African dolls to the market. He says Mahle is a Zulu word meaning beautiful, and that the company seeks to use the dolls to instil identity and self-love in children especially in those of African descent.
The company is named after his five-year-old daughter Kaelo. Mulaudzi, who completed his chartered accountancy articles at Sasol, also has a three-year-old son Neo.
He says after spending four years as a lead investment analyst at Sasol Pension Fund where he managed about R45 billion of employees’ money, he started his own investment firm called Black Pearl Investments.
He says he started designing dolls as a hobby project while waiting for his investment license. “I was looking for a black doll for my daughter but I couldn’t find one,” recalls Mulaudzi who is originally from Duthuni village in Venda, Limpopo.
“The ones I could find were either not pretty or were overpriced. That’s when I decided to design one for my daughter.” He says it cost R50000 to design a mould and the factory he found couldn’t produce just one doll so they settled on a minimum order of 50 dolls.