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Turning trash into treasure

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Entrepreneur gives old tyres new life

Everyday new car tyres are bought to replace old, worn-out ones.

These old tyres pile up at the tire service providers making the surrounding look untidy.

Nkao Hillary of Nkao Grand Designs, a company that specializes in re-cycling tyres, has found a perfect use for old tyres by remodeling them into stylish and elegant chairs and tables.

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The 45-year-old says art has always been his first love.

“I have always been an artist, everything that I can imagine in my head I am able to put it down either in drawing, painting and sculpturing of any form of art,” he explains.

Although he has had the passion for art since his childhood, Nkao Grand Design was only established in 2018.

“Before I started this business, I had attempted several times to set up shop but went on to assist my sister to manage her security company instead. I was not fulfilled so I eventually decided to do something with my passion for art,” narrates Nkao, his rugged features lighting up as he describes making a living from doing what he loves.

He then started to collect old tyres for free from tyre services on condition that they were solely for the purpose of recycling.

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“I get the tyres for free but I have to declare that I am not getting them to sell or use on my car because worn tires can cause accidents. After getting the tyres I buy other materials like the leather for covering, paints and other materials I use for designing,” he says.

Turning trash into treasure

Turning trash into treasure

Even though Covid-19 has affected many businesses, Nkao says his enterprise has not felt too much of a pinch.

“My only challenge is pricing. It takes a lot of time and effort not to mention the cost of material to make a product, but people still want to get them at the a price that would be a loss to me.”

According to Nkao, his target market is just anybody who has an income and interest in beautiful and unique tables and chairs.

“Anyone can come and buy; I have not restricted myself to any group of people. People just come through and buy, especially ever since I started displaying my products on Social Media,’’ he says.

Competition wise Nkao is not worried, as he has not felt threatened because no one has copied his idea for now.

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Despite the financial constraints, Nkao is grateful that Batswana are supporting his business.

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