The Barber Empire (TBE) was launched on October 1 at the corner of Main Road and Mahonie Crescent in Extension Two this year to create a platform for young men in the community to showcase their hair cutting and styling talents.
Directors Levine Martin and Euston Lemmetjies said that the sole reason for opening the barber shop was to better the community.
“We’ve always been passionate about a brotherhood, so with the barbershop, we plan to take and keep young men off the street.
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“We want to empower our brothers and equip them with the skills they need to be successful. TBE is more than just being a barber, we want to encourage those we work with to be more business minded. We teach our men not to put limitations on themselves. Here at TBE, the sky is the limit,” said Martin.
TBE participated in a competition last week hosted by Wahl, a reputable clipper brand. The barbers competed in three categories which were, fastest fade, a low fade with beard as well as a freestyle design category.
They took third place for fastest fade, first place for freestyle design and were the overall winners in the competition. Martin and Lemmietjies said that they were extremely proud of how well the men did at the competition.
“We entered the competition because we wanted to gain experience more than anything. We’ve only been open for about a month now, so we were very nervous but we believe in the men here and we believe in our craft. Winning the competition proved that we are indeed skilled.”
“We were afforded the opportunity to meet people from big brands, so the exposure and networking were good for us,” Martin said. Lemmetjies said that TBE has a list of goals which they hope to achieve within the next few months.
“We’ve always dreamed about having four locations. We currently have two, one in Eldorado Park and one in Florida. We hope to open our next location in Orlando and somewhere in the North.”
“Our main focus for next year is on our barber academy. We want to host in-house training for the youngsters in our communities. We would like to mentor them and skill them. The aim of the training is to empower them so they can open their own stores one day,” he added.
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