We celebrate youth month with the founder of Phuthulla Pelo brand, Tebogo Nkadu, a 31-year-old from Bloemfontein. We asked about his childhood, Tebogo answered “it was just ordinary, like any childhood in an ordinary family situation”. He was born and grew up in Bloemfontein. He attended Kgato Primary School, then later proceeded to Brebner High School, where he completed his matric in 2007.

We asked Tebogo to tell us more about “Phuthulla Pelo” he replied “my brand was inspired by a situation a friend of mine was in, she had a problem with an ex of hers and I’d tell her to let it go and free herself from bitterness and hatred, so I used the words Phuthulla Pelo (Sotho/Setswana for free your heart) to motivate someone who’s in the same situation to let go of the past, anger, bitterness and everything that hinders one’s energy/life negatively”. the main purpose was to inspire people around him. He went on to tell us that it first started as a joke on Facebook when he would add “#phuthullapelo” at the end of every status he posted, people even started calling him “Mr. Phuthulla Pelo”. 

In December 2015/16 he decided to start something, “I was like, I need to implement this, I need to bring this brand to life” he added. Tebogo is inspired by people in his life, people with good energy, and people who ooze positivity. He is highly inspired by his mother, sisters, grandmother, and aunt he describes them as “women who have always had integrity, stability, and strength”. Another source of inspiration for him is Bonang Matheba, whom he sees as a reflection of himself in her, vice versa because they are both hard-working and determined, and he will soon be at the top.

Asked about the challenges he faces, he told us that one of the biggest challenges he faces is the season change. Initially, when he started, he ventured into clothing but he then shifted (not permanently) from clothing and started venturing into events and selling bags, key holders, etc, because he strongly believes in growth and investment. He also told us that some of the challenges he faces also include finance even Covid-19 has impacted his business badly given that he now has to look for a factory that provides great service and quality material so that he can offer his clients good quality service that they are used to, another challenge he spoke of, is that styles change over time he has to keep up with what is trending at the moment. Even though he encountered challenges there are positive things that came along, uring covid level5/4 in 2020 he worked as a Radio Host and also a presenter on The Switch Lifestyle Talk show on Fs Online and Tebogo is also an Entertainment presenter on Mangaung Music Live Stream with alongside various Mangaung Artists. He is also an artist (Vocalist) who has worked with the Big Names and also performed at big events such as Macufe and Cherry Festivals.

We asked where he would like to see his brand in a few years’ he answered “I would like to see Phuthulla Pelo hosting one of the biggest events in South Africa”. Tebogo is highly inspired by young hard-working people, those who persevere and do not give up on what they believe in. As he travels he also gets inspired “I always tell my friends and family that I have a straw in my hand, and I use that straw to suck up good things I see wherever I’m traveling to and bring them home, new ideas and the great energy I come across” Tebogo is overall inspired by growth.