ENTREPRENEUR SPOTLIGHT: DEMI SAMANDE, FROM HOBBY TO PROFITABLE BUSINESS

ENTREPRENEUR SPOTLIGHT: DEMI SAMANDE, FROM HOBBY TO PROFITABLE BUSINESS

DEMI SAMANDE FOUNDER MAJEURS CHESTERFIELD

Demi Samande is the Founder and creative head of Majeurs Chesterfield. This company was born from a hobby, and now, it has matured into one of the biggest furniture companies in Nigeria that specializes in manufacturing leather and fabric furniture.

FROM nigeria to United Kingdom

Demi was born in Nigeria back in 1986. While still a toddler, her parents relocated to England. Demi Samande graduated in 2010 with a degree in Architecture from London Metropolitan University. The Nigerian returnee was motivated to study architecture by her love for furniture.

After completing university education, she spent much of her time at home. So, while at home, she started playing with the furniture as a hobby. The certified architect loves antique things. So, she would keep herself busy in the living room by fixing worn-out furniture.

Building Career In The U.K

After completing university education, she spent much of her time at home. So, while at home, she started playing with the furniture as a hobby. The certified architect loves antique things. So, she would keep herself busy in the living room by fixing worn-out furniture.

She had wanted a thick piece of foam but got a newer one delivered. She decided to look for a genuine piece and by the time she got what she wanted she had too many in her house. So she sold all of them and kept just one. This was how she began buying damaged furniture, restoring, and selling it, making herself a profit.

Birth of Majeurs Chesterfield

From this, Majeurs Chesterfield was born in 2011. Majeurs Chesterfield is a furniture company that specializes in upholstery and in the restoration and production of fabric and leather furniture. It is a brand that blends the old and new and it has a signature design of buttons piercing through it.

In 2015, Prince Charles had an interest in creatives visited her London studio. In the same year, she was invited to showcase her work at 10 Downing Street. She met David Cameron, the former British Prime Minister, at the event. This shot up the profile of her business.

Moving Back To Nigeria

After 30 years of being in the UK, in 2016, Demi Samande decided it was time to move back to Nigeria. She believed that Nigeria was a place where no matter how big your dreams were, they could be realized. 

On getting to Nigeria, she found herself a workspace in Surulere and local carpenters willing to work. They began to work on creating the first samples. The wood and foam used in the production of this furniture are gotten locally. While for the fabrics, they are mostly imported as they are not produced locally yet.

The Humble Beginnings

From this humble beginning, the company started creating its first samples. Then Demi invested some money in hiring a small three-roomed office and making it presentable. “I went to a small office space to operate from. It wasn’t even the nicest area, but that didn’t matter.

I had a great team who were happy to work with me.” Next, she began building a sales marketing team that would find her customers. Fast forward, Majeurs Chesterfield has made a name for itself in Nigeria and beyond.

Her Future Plans

Demi Samande envisions the products of Majeurs Chesterfield in almost every office and home someday. To achieve this, the company aims to manufacture and distribute top-quality furniture to low-end, middle-level, as well as high-end customers.

She hopes to start a school in the future where she will train people about making good furniture. Moreover, the Nigerian returnee focuses on sustainable manufacturing as well as making furniture as affordable as possible.

Nigeria’s a place where no matter how big your dreams are, you can realize them there.
— Demi Samande, In an interview with African vibes

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