Meet Penny Clarke, founder of Millie’s International Creations, an online fashion boutique that sells high-end, handcrafted African-themed jewelry and handbags. She started the company six years ago when she become a furloughed government employee working in Washington, DC. Since then, after partnering with local female artisans in Ghana, she has grown the business from about $5,000 in monthly sales to now more than $50,000 month.
Penny, who was born and raised in Liberia, says that it was during a visit to South Africa when she developed a passion and desire to help women around the world achieve their dreams. Now she works with a team of female designers who are all located on the African continent to help with her line of necklaces, earrings, bracelets, headwraps, handbags, and more.
How She Grew Her Business
Her business, like many other Black-owned businesses, really took off after the pandemic began in 2020. Part of this had to do with the powerful global movement to support Black entrepreneurs after the brutal killing of George Floyd. However, the major part of her continuous sales growth has to do with 7th Pro Solutions, a digital marketing agency that she hired to help her optimize her website and run very profitable Facebook ad campaigns.
Penny comments, “When I started working with Edwin Jardin (the founder of 7th Pro Solutions), he really helped me to create a sales funnel for my website that has literally increased my revenue by 500%. My company now gets sales every single day, and it’s a challenge to keep up with inventory.”
Making Her Mom Proud
Penny, who is the youngest of 8 children, says that she named the company after her mom who was a schoolteacher and principal but also sold cornbread as an entrepreneur in Liberia. She says that her mom taught her and her siblings the importance of having multiple streams of income.
Sadly, her mom died of breast cancer and congestive heart failure, but her legacy of entrepreneurship lives on through Penny and her other siblings who are successful business owners. As a part of Penny’s commitment to women and the continent of Africa, proceeds from every sale generated on her website are donated to various nonprofits around the world.
For more details and/or to make a purchase, visit MilliesInt.com
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