After a successful holiday season, Aya Fair Trade is looking forward to the next phase of their business plan.
In the first week of March, AFT CEO Ellen Clauss is heading back to Ghana to meet with fabric manufacturers and dyers to find one closer to the village that fits with Aya Fair Trade’s goals as a company. She’s also bringing along a fellow Marywood graduate videographer to help her film a marketing film to better capture what Aya Fair Trade is all about.
It’s roughly a 36-hour trip from Scranton to Kumasi, Ghana where Aya Fair Trade employs its seamstresses, via planes, taxis and busses. Ellen said that trip requires plenty of planning while still in the states when it comes to arranging travel schedules and finding places to eat due to the lack of available internet overseas. However, she keeps a positive outlook, and views these as only “minor challenges”.
“I live by the motto that no good story starts with “everything went smoothly”,” said Ellen.
In the new year, Aya is narrowing down their specific clientele to better market their products, choosing to attend larger trade shows on a more limited basis rather than attending smaller craft shows weekly. Trade shows also allow for great networking opportunities with business owners and other vendors who can offer advice or sell their products.
Also, Aya Fair Trade is applying for membership to the Fair Trade Federation. This would allow their products to become fair trade certified and be sold in fair trade stores.
For more information, including new products and upcoming trade show locations and dates, visit Aya’s website.