Sneaker boys keep tekkies clean

2016-02-18 06:00
 Bopngo Mahambehlala of NY71 Tekkie Wash shows off some of their work.  PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

Bopngo Mahambehlala of NY71 Tekkie Wash shows off some of their work. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

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Gugulethu seems to spring up new enterprises by the day, and, come weekends, locals step out in style, as a result.

NY71 Tekkie Wash is the brainchild of friends Bongo Mahambehlala and Phila Magidigidi.

The duo have been running a sneaker cleaning services to residents from Nju and surrounds since January.

According to Mahambehlala,30, this idea was brewing in his mind for sometime but only came to a boil when he saw a similar service in a television series.

“I have always been a person that enjoyed a clean living space and do a lot of chores around the house. I had toyed with the idea but when I saw a similar programme on TV, I started asking my friends if they would pay for a similar service,” he told City Vision. He said that most of his friend said that they would pay for such a service and he started washing their sneakers. “My partner and I started spreading the word and our clients started doing the same thing. We used to wash a few sneakers a week but now we average around four sneakers a day. Our customers were so happy that they started recommending us to other friends and we are happy because it means we are heading in the right direction,” he said.

They charge R20 a pair and say that this is so that their price do not alienate other potential clients.

“Everyone wears sneakers, from the young to the old, so we must cater for everyone. We noticed that the majority of our customers are ladies and young people in general.

We believe that most come to us as part of the preparations for the weekend with business picking up around Wednesdays.

We have a 48 hour turnaround time and so far our clients have been very happy with our work,” Mahambehlala said.

He said that another trend they spotted was that the favourite brand so far was Converse All Star followed by Nike sneakers.

“Our most immediate goal is to have a delivery service using a branded bicycle and in the long term we are hoping to have our own shop where will be able to dye the sneakers, fix them and sell shoe related material like laces, inners and shoe care products,” he added. One happy client, Wandile Ayliff who is also a friend, said that he was sold on the idea the first time he was approached. “It’s a great idea because people don’t have the time to clean their sneakers and they a very affordable,” he said.

NY71 Tekkie Wash can be contacted on 060 359 0754 or on their Facebook page.

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