Runako Skincare: A Year in Reflection 2019

I wrote guest blog for to share updates and successes on the 2019! check it out below. The article can also be viewed on their blog via this link

Runako & Co. Updates

As I am writing this, our company, Runako & Co, is about to turn 10 months. We launched our company on Valentine’s Day, using the hashtag #spreadsomelove to share what we loved. This year has been an amazing year to say the least. After launching our company, we gained a great mentor named Mei Xu, finished off Y Combinator StartUp School, a free online course for founders actively pursuing their own startup, and continued to build our company customer by customer. 

So, as we near the end of the year, it’s only right to reflect on what Runako & Co means; and what we anticipate in not only the year ahead, but the decade ahead. There is so much excitement from our team. 

Family Ties

When the idea came to create Runako & Co, our thoughts were to build and scale our company as a family business, one that impacts economies globally. We launched this company with the intention of growing it as a family and roping in everyone that would make a positive impact to our growth and the culture of Runako. And recently, Tawanda and Tatenda’s father, Davison Gumbo, stepped in. 

Our father has a PhD in Ecology, specializing in the conservation of biodiversity on the African continent. We often laugh when we refer to him as Dr. Gumbo (Tatenda says journalistically she must only call him Mr. Gumbo). But what happened organically, changed the way we will move forward as a company. As we discussed sourcing ingredients from the African continent, he enlightened us. He revealed that Zimbabwe, our home country, is known for some of the best honeybees in the world. 

Of course, beeswax is one of the main ingredients in our Body Butter. Beeswax is known to soothe and naturally hydrate the skin. We decided that we would source our beeswax from Zimbabwe, directly from our father’s rural home, Mberengwa. 

We plan on sourcing our own beeswax for our products and eventually want to supply other companies throughout southern African and beyond. However, it is most important for us that we build a foundation that will create jobs for people in Zimbabwe, a country that had faced continued economic and political challenges over the past two decades. Our father’s role is integral as we grow, because his knowledge of the ecosystems on the continent will help us make conscious decisions and remain a company that sources natural and organic ingredients. 

Looking Ahead

Though we are a young company, we have made great progress and expect to continue to make progress. We want the foundation of Runako & Co to be rooted in family and legacy. Our mission is now clearer, we understand we have the ability to affect change in people’s lives as we grow as a company. We look forward to scaling, and we know our successes will rely on family, between here in America and our mother’s and father’s land, Zimbabwe.

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