How Aakifah, 15, Invented her Own Product and Started Her Own Business

Ocean View’s Aakifah Slarmie is just like any other 15-year-old inventor and entrepreneur. She likes to wear “kwaai” takkies, loves inventing useful products and enjoys making money in the process. This young inventor and entrepreneur has solved a problem every takkie lover in the country has: how to keep their takkies clean!

Aakifah’s love for takkies seems to have started with her parents. Every Eid, they would buy her a new pair of takkies to add to her ever-growing collection. However, as much as she loved her takkies, both she and her friends, hated how dirty they would get! Even though there are a lot of takkie cleaning products in the shops , Aakifah found that most of them are too expensive for a lot of people, and far too damaging on both the takkies and the environment. Since Aakifah couldn’t find the takkie cleaner she was looking for, she decided to make her own!

Aakifah spent a lot of time trying different mixtures which she gave to her friends. She finally found a mixture that worked best, leaving her takkies clean and looking almost as good as when she first wore them! With the help of her father, her business; SneekerClean; was born. Her father found a local manufacturer who helped bottle Aakifah’s “magic potion” and soon, she began selling it.

After Aakifah gave Cape Town rapper, YoungstaCPT a bottle to sample, he loved it so much he started stocking it in his pop-up stores! Now, Aakifah sells over 300 bottles a month, which is a great achievement for this young businesswoman. The Fish Hoek High pupil never thought her takkie cleaner would become so popular, because it was just something she was going to sell to her friends. The best part about this eco-friendly takkie cleaner is the fact that it doesn’t require water, which is great considering the current water crisis in parts of South Africa. Aakifah’s takkie cleaner, SneekerClean, guarantees that your sneakers will be spotless—whether you have access to water or not!

Aakifah is just a girl who likes to cool things and inventing cool things. Thanks to her entrepreneurial spirit, this 15-year-old is well on her way to becoming a millionaire, one clean pair of sneakers at a time!

Source: (edited from an article written by Rusana Philander)

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