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  Years ago, Nigeria’s fashion industry was dominated by men and women who specialized in the design of wear using various manually operated sewing machines and tools. However, this industry is gradually experiencing a remarkable transformation, fuelled by technological advancements and a new generation of innovative startups.
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These enterprises are not only capturing local attention but are also making a significant impact on the global fashion scene. Leveraging technology, creativity, and a deep understanding of cultural aesthetics, Nigerian fashion startups are redefining style and production standards. This article highlights three Nigerian fashion startups making waves in the industry. These companies bring something unique, from e-commerce platforms to design houses that set new trends. Their success stories are a testament to the vibrant and dynamic spirit of the Nigerian population.


The5kshop is a unique and innovative online fashion retailer that is transforming how Nigerians shop for clothing. Founded to provide quality fashion items at affordable prices, The5kshop ensures that every product is priced within 5,000 Naira or less. This pricing strategy has made fashion accessible to a broader audience in Nigeria, breaking the barrier of high costs associated with trendy and stylish clothing. Sophia Ike-Onu, the CEO of The5kshop, launched the platform to cater to fashion-savvy individuals who seek affordability without compromising on quality. stocks a variety of products, including fashion, beauty, and lifestyle items. The brand’s label, T5S features exclusive designs that resonate with contemporary Nigerian tastes. In 2016, Sophia Ike-Onu was recognized for her entrepreneurial spirit when she was named one of the winners of the Enterprise Challenge competition organized by The British Council, in partnership with Virgin Atlantic Airways, Zenith Bank, and Samsung West Africa. This accolade highlighted the innovative approach and the significant impact has had on the Nigerian fashion industry. The5kshop’s commitment to affordability and quality has earned it a loyal customer base. The startup’s efficient online platform and user-friendly shopping experience have set new standards in Nigeria’s e-commerce sector. By offering stylish, affordable clothing, is democratizing fashion and empowering more Nigerians to express their style confidently.

Style House Files

The Business of Fashion
Style House Files, founded by Omoyemi Akerele, is a fashion business development agency promoting Nigerian and African textile and fashion industries globally. Established in 2011, Style House Files has played a pivotal role in shaping the fashion industry in Nigeria. The agency’s primary objective is to nurture and showcase the talents of African designers, providing them with the tools and platforms to succeed. One of the key initiatives by Style House Files is the Lagos Fashion Week (LFW), which has become a major event in the African fashion calendar. LFW brings together designers, buyers, and fashion enthusiasts, offering emerging and established designers platforms to showcase their collections. This event has been instrumental in putting Nigerian fashion on the global map, highlighting the creativity and innovation that define the industry. Style House Files also focuses on capacity building and brand promotion for fashion brands in Nigeria through its signature workshops and mentorship programs such as SHF Trains and SHF Prism. In addition, the agency which prides itself as one spearheading change in Nigeria’s fashion industry, engages in fashion advocacy through its Fashion Business Series and In Conversation With. By fostering an environment of growth and learning, Style House Files ensures that Nigerian fashion startups have the support and exposure needed to thrive in the global market.


Zashadu is a leading Nigerian sustainable luxury brand specializing in handcrafted leather bags. Founded by Zainab Ashadu, Zashadu combines traditional African craftsmanship with modern design aesthetics. The brand sources its materials ethically, using locally sourced leather and employing artisans from the Nigerian community. According to their website, stylish mini bags, clutches, and totes made from local and sustainably sourced leathers, farmed exotic skins, and rough-cut precious stones set in brass, are just some of the styles that feature throughout the brand’s collections. Believed to draw from the designer’s experience as an architect and her work exploring the spatial relationship between geometry and fluidity, Zashadu’s pieces strike a juxtaposition between quiet elegance and unabashed glamour. In an interview with Shop McCullen a few years ago, Zainab said that she draws inspiration mostly from Nature, making an effort to pay attention to it. “I delight in the patterns that are present, and how we as humanity are all part of it,” the designer was quoted as saying. The fashion brand recognised at the Lagos Fashion Week 2015 as Accessories Designer of the Year is carried by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and designer Lisa Folawiyo. Zainab Ashadu’s vision for Zashadu goes beyond creating beautiful products; she aims to empower local artisans and promote sustainable practices within Nigeria’s fashion industry. By doing so, Zashadu is setting a benchmark for other Nigerian fashion startups, demonstrating that luxury and sustainability can go hand in hand.
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Concluding Thoughts

The success stories of The5kShop, Style House Files, and Zashadu highlight Nigerian fashion’s vibrant and innovative spirit. Leveraging technology, these startups are making waves both locally and globally. Indeed, the future of Nigeria’s fashion industry looks promising, thanks to the relentless efforts of these trailblazing startups.
Featured Image Source: Industrie Africa
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This article was first published on 11th June 2024


Ifegwu-Mbonu Victor is a Personal Growth and Leadership Trainer who provides training and coaching to individuals and organizations.

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