A bright new chapter in carpentry
Serbian native, Ivica Radovic is carving out a life in Botswana with his talented hands.
Through his recently founded company, ‘Bright Chapter’, the 45-year-old carpenter is fast becoming the go-to guy in Gabs for custom-made, quality household items fashioned out of wood, copper, and steel.
In an exclusive interview with Voice Money, Radovic revealed he came to Botswana as a wide-eyed teenager eager to learn.
“I joined my father who was staying in Lobatse. I stayed there with him and later married a Mmadinare-born lady. My passion for carpentry developed in 2002 when I was working as a project manager for a local contractor. I was in charge of the renovations at BBS banking hall at the head office and later on supervised six renovations for BBS across the country,” recalled the well-spoken European migrant.
Radovic is quick to single out his dad for the role he played in shaping his life.
“When I was 23, I and my father built a four-bedroomed house and a multi-store building back home by ourselves. We did all the finishes of the house except for the plumbing and electricity, which was amazing,” said Radovic, the memory still causing him to smile 22 years later.
Despite his ability, Radovic had no intention of turning his hobby into a fully-fledged business. But then Covid-19 hit, changing everything.
“The first lockdown played a crucial part in me starting Bright Chapter Pty Ltd as I had been managing my wife’s music business for five years. There were no more gigs and gatherings, hence I opted to start doing my hobby, which was making furniture. I was operating from home and people were impressed with my products. I’ve not looked back since,” he declared, adding his wife brings an extra dimension to the business, baking cookies, and cakes.
Although competition in the industry is fierce, Radovic is not daunted and is confident his superior quality will win out.
“The hiccups I experienced thus far is getting a correct fitting for the furniture I make. Also, the market is overflowing with low-quality Chinese products hence I’m forced to import from South Africa so that my products stand out. Competition is what keeps us going, and drives me to make better and new things,” he concluded.