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Emefa Kuadey is a British-born Ghanaian fashion designer and the founder of israella KOBLA, a luxury made-to-order clothing and accessories brand that “redefines minimalism.” Emefa left her corporate career in 2017 to pursue studies in fashion design at George Brown College. She launched israella KOBLA, and since its launch, the brand has been featured in ELLE, Flare, and FASHION magazine and in TV segments on The Marilyn Dennis Show, CitylineTV, and Breakfast TV Toronto. israella KOBLA pieces are currently available at israellakobla.com, thebay.com and select Hudson’s Bay stores across Ontario.
Emefa is one of !lterna’s funding recipients from the Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund Microfinance pilot program. The financing she received allowed her to cover the initial inventory costs for in-store launches with Hudson’s Bay and invest in industrial equipment to make production processes more efficient as she continues to scale. “Without the funding, we wouldn’t have been able to successfully enter retail stores last year.”
Emefa uses Black History Month as an opportunity to discover new black-owned brands both locally and globally. “I find that many people, and businesses, use it as an opportunity to bring awareness to brands I may never have discovered. I also love when israella KOBL! is included in some of these lists and we’re opened up to a totally new audience.”