Chloe Benson: Minding My Business
Interview with the Founder of The Luxury Collection
The Luxury Collection aka TLC is a gift shop that sells interior accessories, furniture, seasonal gifts, hampers, object d'art and much more. Owned by twenty-seven year old Chloe Benson she shares with us the highs and lows of being a young entrepreneur in Nigeria.
What motivated you to open your own store at such a young age?
Having studied Biological Sciences at University, I never thought I'd get into interior design but it comes very natural to me as I grew up in that environment. I have been working in my mother's stores since I was about 10years old. My parents have been a big motivation, helping me to realise my true calling and encouraging me to focus on what I do best. My dad, Bobby Benson Jr. suggested that I open a store in Lagos and partner with my mother Abiodun Feuser-Ajidahun who owns Nettetal Luxury in Port Harcourt and Abuja. Nettetal is a furniture and lifestyle accessory store similar to TLC.
What challenges have you faced as a young entrepreneur in Nigeria?
I would have to say the greatest challenge is financing. Support from the banks is slim to none. A young person cant walk into a bank with a business plan and expect much, you have to rely on private funding and support.
What are the highlights of owning your own business?
I'm able to express my creativity doing what I love and enjoy! As the saying goes 'Love what you do and you'll never have to work a day in your life'.
What advice would you give to aspiring shop owners?
Put your business plan together, study your market and work, work, work!!! Be ready to work long hours and remain focused on your goal. It's not easy but it's all worth it in the end. Work towards offering services of a higher standard than you expect to receive.
Tell us about your store and what makes it different from other furniture stores in Nigeria?
There is no where in Lagos that offers such a variety if inspired pieces. Each individual piece has been handpicked to suit my vibrant and unique style and that of the people in my surrounding. TLC's items are mainly sourced from Germany and Italy so they are of high quality and good value for your money, I'll end this by saying 'Everybody Needs TLC..' the name simply speaks for itself. Yes we are The Luxury Collection, but we offer you Tender Love and Care. Stop by and experience it for yourself.