Rachel Lim knows that a successful business is not about a smooth journey or one without failures and hardship, but rather, “it’s about conquering, and finding within yourself the tenacity to rise above.”
A decade ago, Rachel and two friends were selling pre-loved clothing online and quickly ran out of stock to sell. After they began importing clothes from Korea and Thailand they realised there was a demand and gap in the market for affordable, trendy and quality fashion.
“We were not satisfied with the designs, details and quality of the pieces that were in the market. That’s why we decided to start Love, Bonito—to design and manufacture our very own pieces.”
Confidence, in and out
Love, Bonito’s mission started as ‘Sharing the Love of Fashion’ but has changed over the years to become ‘Empowering Confidence Through Style’. The shift was inspired by the impact that Love, Bonito had on women’s lives. The brand promoted confidence to look and feel great.
Today, Love, Bonito is Singapore’s largest women’s e-commerce label.
“We are a fast fashion label that specialises in designing clothes that cater to the style and fit of the Asian woman, at an affordable price. Our biggest markets are currently Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia,” Rachel explains.
Being at the forefront of the online shopping scene was not easy for Rachel and her team. Love, Bonito was started back in 2006, before the boom of e-commerce stores in Singapore.
“There were many procedures with external stakeholders such as delivery, logistics and online transactions that we had to figure out on our own as there were no protocols in place to follow,” Rachel adds.
Despite these hurdles, Rachel has cultivated the habit of shutting out negative thoughts that bring doubt and discouragement. “I believe that in every woman lies the strength and drive to overcome anything.”
The same goes for her trust and relationship with her team. “At Love, Bonito, we believe that greatness starts with an internal culture that believes in our people by empowering and trusting them to push boundaries.”
Love, Bonito use Facebook and Instagram to share updates on the latest arrivals and promotions with their customers. “Ever since we set up our Facebook and Instagram accounts, we’ve leveraged on these platforms for informative purposes and building a brand connection with our customers,” says Rachel.
In October 2015, Rachel decided to concentrate on directly promoting her business through Facebook, which proved to be a success. This move has helped Love, Bonito reach an estimated 142% more customers.
“Facebook and Instagram have played a vital role in growing the business and reaching out to women,” adds Rachel.
Building a bright future
Love, Bonito is now looking to expand further into other Southeast Asia markets and open up a flagship store in Singapore.
Rachel has four simple words to say to aspiring female entrepreneurs: “If not now, when?”