Skybag Fabric Tailors PBC is an emerging bag manufacturing and distribution firm in Zimbabwe. It was launched on the 1st of February 2017, although our footprints can be tracked back as far as June 2007 in the informal sector. We make all types of bags – school bags, nappy bags, travel bags and recently we have dropped into the market “eye catching church hand bags”. The business is privately owned by Mr. Kudakwashe Chinya (2016/17 YEP first runner up) with a team of 5 full time members and more 6 casuals. We have two branches in Harare CBD, one at Number 6 Cameroon street and the other one at number 67 Chinhoyi Street.
To become the best provider of textile bags by 2021 in Zimbabwe.
We select, cut, design and knit durable portable bags that ensure maximum security of all valuables.
- Deliver orders in time and ensure customer satisfaction
- Commitment to achieve high staff morale.
- Team work to ensure growth and job creation
Chinya Kudakwashe- Founder and Managing Director of SkyBag
About the founder
Kudakwashe Chinya was hailed from Mafararikwa Village under Chief Marange. My early days were not that sweet just like many from my continent. Things were never the same as they are today. Winter gave way to summer and through the passage of time until YEP through CBZ and ELT like a knighted warrior arrived and changed everything forever.
My metamorphosis into a business man started at a tender age. The unforgiving environment in which I grew up in serenaded me into honing entrepreneurial skills at a very tender age to help my parents make ends meet. My story is one of perseverance and determination, two ethoses that still define my business ethos today. Barefooted for the better part of my sojourn through primary and secondary school years, my quest for the Royal Grail of knowledge took me to Mafararikwa and Chirinda schools from 1994-2006. It was during these formative years that I began to take the first tentative steps towards being an entrepreneur of a kind. To complement the little that my parents could scrap from our barren fields, I began selling mutsege (roasted nuts).
It was in the year 2007 that I made the sojourn to the City of Dreams, Harare the dreams of a million souls stranded in the rural areas today. There under the tutelage of my uncle Mr. Neboth Mutanga, the SkyBag Dream was born. I then began making bags for sale and successfully sent myself to university where I was trained to sell air – Tourism and Hospitality. My one year of industrial attachment at Mr. Themba Musekiwa’s Touchwood Lodges proved to be a turning point in my life. I learned true entrepreneurship.
In 2016, I took the challenge in the heavily contested Youth Entrepreneurs Program and on the 9th of March 2017 I was selected the first runner up for 2016/17 YEP edition Since then I have remained in partnership with CBZ and ELT and we have managed to assemble a living organisation dedicated to provide affordable bags across the African continent.
And behold enter the partners for success – YEP
Just as the African proverb says, “If you want to go fast go alone, if you want to go far, walk with others”, my business today owes a great deal to the dedicated man and women from CBZ and Empowered Life Trust who courageously sacrificed their time to journey with me this far. What sunshine is to flowers in their time of bloom, so was the assistance I received from YEP during my quest for excellence to induct myself into the citadel of the industrial mighty. YEP taught me how to test the limits of my potential. SkyBag Fabric Tailors will forever be in the debt of YEP for they turned a simple dream into such a creative force that now burns beyond the borders of tomorrow.
SkyBag Team at Youth Entrepreneurs Expo
Life before and after YEP
Every day is an opportunity to be creative however without someone to provide the canvass and brush, imagination may die a natural death. The imaginative canvass in our minds to see fruition needs partners for success. Before YEP I was a painter of some sort, painting pictures that sometimes I would hide when visitors walked in. I only had a friend whom I would ask to assist carrying sacks when going around selling. I would sometimes spend the whole night sewing alone and then in the morning get my friend to pack the bags into sacks then hit the road selling.
At the crossroads: Kuda and Odmell before YEP
Bags were of a certain quality that I cannot describe today, no wonder marketing them was difficult. We could not afford the right material and machinery to paint the best pictures that roamed my mind. After my partnership with YEP things have changed for the good. The creativity forces within me have been given the chance to fully express themselves. And these creations have taken SkyBag to lands that once were unthinkable to me. YEP has helped me purchase very expensive industrial machines to boost production capacity. Production has improved as well as quality. When finally the curtain comes down, they would write on our epitaphs that were there and helped shape the tomorrows of generations and generations. Our aim is to make it a crime in Africa to send a child to school without a decent school bag. It happened in my time, and as SkyBag we cannot continue entertaining the same that happened in our time.
The pictures below show how far we have come with the help of YEP.
The above pictures show some of the creative designs now in stock. We are now able to provide bags for a host of churches in and around Harare as well as school bags.
The picture above shows a much improved travel bag.
SkyBag empowering the next generation to greatness – Chartgroove Primary school children with SkyBag satchels
With YEP comes quality and quantity: YEP empowering creative imagination
SkyBag’s new germs on the market
Presently we are succumbing to high demand volumes. Our new Christian handbag has been like a golden goose to our operations. We have sold many of its kind, exporting to traders who come as far as South Africa, Tanzania and Mozambique. Currently we have been approached by a certain tribe in Namibia to design cultural bags for them. Pre-school demand for our products has been on the rise recently. Although we have been able to improve the quality of our products a s well as boost productivity, we have not been able to cope with demand. We have created a huge following for our products and day by day as demand grows in leaps and bounds, slowly demand is outgrowing us. With state of the art machines and vehicles to transport some of our raw materials and products we could become a global force.
Our biggest worry is to bring state of art machinery from China and provision of vibrant business on how to source funding to access state of the art machines from China since we make bags according to customer specifications and requirements.
My message to all aspiring entrepreneurs in Zimbabwe
Mankind is a creation of a kind. We are all born winners. However, sometimes we fail to reach our potential because we have that fear; we feel comfortable by living with old ideas, we are afraid to embrace the new ideas that cry for expression within our creative souls. Let go of the fear for we are all born artists. Yes we need old ideas; yes it’s the creative paradox of our time that we need to familiarize with the old ideas of others in order to be originally creative. One great man Lincoln Steffens once said “Nothing is done. Everything remains to be done or done over. The greatest picture is not yet painted, the greatest play isn’t written, the greatest poem is unsung. There isn’t in the world a perfect railroad, or a good government, or sound law”, hence as Barack Obama would say, “there is no excuse for not trying”. Let us test ourselves to the limit, explore the potential that lies in you to the fullest.
We need to desist from theoretical faith to practical faith – Chanting “I receive” will never bring tangibles. Always act after prayers. Zvangu zvichaita chete – Riini ??, nguva iri kufamba. Don’t waste time, as time is money. Develop an attitude of cheating poverty = Confidence plus dressing. Train yourself an affluent life; visit that expensive restaurant to buy mineral water once in a while. Create jobs and DON’T destroy jobs – value is in numbers, steal other people’s brains disregarding their status. Dynamites are from small shells. If you are not in it, please ignore politricks of the land and concentrate with personal and national development.
The sad part of our sometimes miserable human existence is that we are prisoners of a kind.
This recumbent wilderness, this world, my world, our world, we are but forever prisoners of our imaginative dreams. Imagination is more important in life than knowledge for knowledge is but limited and through life I have learnt to dip my painting brush into my own soul and painting my own dreams into creative forces. Today, I am a prisoner of hope who knows that to the one who dares to go after his/her own inspiration the world is but a canvass to the imaginative. Today I am a prisoner of hope, a dreamer who fully knows that the Stone Age didn’t end because they ran out of stones. I live for my dream and I know that the creative forces of imagination that burns brighter than burning rain within me will one day allow me to dine at the citadel of the mighty. Life has taught me to dream beyond the borders of tomorrow and to enjoy the habit of aiming for excellence.