Local businessman, Sibusiso Ngwenya, better known as Skinny Sbu after the popular sock brand he founded, is certainly on the rise again!
The 27-year-old entrepreneur recently posted a video on social media, that quickly caught the attention of many, including celebrities and media personalities.
In the video, Sbu is holding a box with a pair of his signature socks, waiting in a passage area. The president of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa then emerges with a number of people, including his security guards, who allow Sbu have a very brief conversation with him.
READ MORE: Missing Skinny Sbu has been found
Sbu quickly introduces his business and himself,
“Mr. President, may I introduce you to South Africa’s biggest sock brand, it’s called Skinny Sbu Socks, I hope you enjoy this pair and I hope you get to give it to your family. They’re by me, my name is Sbu, I’m skinny and I make socks.” The president who’s visibly in a rush, pauses to ask the young man, “You’re skinny?” as he examines him, to which everyone laughs. Before quickly rushing off, the president thanks Sbu and shakes his hand.
Sbu captioned the post:
“President Cyril Ramaphosa NOW owns a pair of @skinnysbusocks2020.”
Talk about an elevator pitch!
Skinny Sbu hasn’t always been at the top of his game.
In an interview with DRUM last year, he explained how in debt his business is, and that he suffered a form of depression. Things so bad, that he went missing for a while – his family and friends had no idea where he was.
He was later found at Dr SK Matseke Hospital in Diepkloof, Soweto.
“I have some form of depression. But in our communities, you get criticised for saying you are weak and under pressure. They tell you to snap out of it. But how do you snap out of something?”
Sbu spent loads of cash keeping up with the flashy lifestyles he saw celebs and businesspeople flaunting on social media.
“I had more access to money than before and I started misusing it. I started making uncalculated decisions and blew a lot on alcohol and going out.” And quickly after that, he found himself in serious debt.
“We didn’t have clients and we had to close down the office.”
The decision to close his Maboneng office, which employed seven people, devastated him. “I chose my team based on skill, talent but also on their personal stories. When I let them go it felt like I’d failed them, like I’m not enough as an entrepreneur.”
He’s been trying to pick up the pieces since, but it’s not been easy. “I’ve remembered the importance of living again. I’m more focused – I even have a rooftop garden where I plant lemons and tomatoes.”
And with his recent courageous move, we say he’ll be back on his feet in no time – only stronger and wiser.