Vera Sidika and Johnson Mwakazi

From Vera to Mwakazi, celebs who have had failed businesses

Being an entrepreneur is every persons dream but what many do not know is having a successful business is not a walk in the park.

This is something some of our Kenyan celebs know very well. They have experienced the agony of losing a business.

We take a look at celebs who have overcome failures in business.

1. Johnson Mwakazi

The media practitioner had at some point opened a media station dubbed WTV which sadly ended up being closed after three years.

He ventured into the solo project after he left his news anchoring job at Citizen TV.

I started a TV station and after three years it didn’t work out.

I remember there were families depending on it as their source of daily bread, and to call them and tell them we are closing down and that we would be releasing some of them was the lowest moment in my entire life.”

Sometimes I meet them.

I’m glad some have jobs, but when I look back, if only I had the option, I would have given them. I would have wanted to have more people employed there.

Johnson Mwakazi

2. Vera Sidika

Vera Sidika’s Hair Lounge specialised in selling of human hair weaves and extensions.

The lounge, which was located at the Greenhouse Mall, Adams Arcade along Ngong Road used to stock super expensive human hair and was expected to be a flourishing venture for her.

Speaking about her business failure in a past interview, the damsel said that the business failed because she was too young.

I am sure a lot of people know I had a high end hair line and it was doing quite well. But I think I was not ready in terms of strategising, planning.

I was a bit young, naive, I was very excited,” she said. 

3. Jack Ma

The owner of Ali Baba has had failure not only in business but in his professional life. As a job seeker, he was rejected in each and every job interview he went to looking for a job.

He says,

I went to get a job at KFC. 24 people lined up, 23 were taken, I was rejected. Five of us went to look for a job in the police. 4 were taken and I was rejected.

My cousin and I waited for two hours in a queue to be the waiter in a four-star hotel in my city on a very hot day.

My cousin’s scores were much lower than mine but he was picked and I was rejected.

This did not stop Jack from wanting more, he took the disappoint and pain and turned it into gold. He used it to build China’s biggest e-commerce company from scratch.

Jack Ma
Jack Ma

4. Bill Gates

Before making it in business, Bill Gates was the co-owner of a failed business called Traf-O-Data. He is currently among the richest people in the world.

Bill Gates
Bill Gates

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