Tilahun Bethlehem Alemu – Founder of soleRebel

Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu is founder and Managing Director of soleRebels, the world’s fastest-growing African footwear brand and the only Fair Trade-certified footwear company in the world. Growing up in a poor suburb of Addis Ababa in Ethiopia,, Bethlehem decided that there was only one way to defeat poverty, use local craftsmanship to make products that can compete in the global marketplace. She decided on footwear and today 70,000 pairs of cool and trendy shoes made from recyclable materials which are 100% eco-friendly leave her factory every year.

Bethlehem only 32 years old, personifies the empowerment that fashion entrepreneurship can provide to young people. Her footwear and leather company, soleRebels, which she founded in 2005 in her local community using local fibres is today one of Africa’s fast growing businesses with standalone stores across Africa, North America, Europe and Asia. alemu

She has won awards such as the Young Global Leader, World Economic Forum, 2011, the Africa Awards for Entrepreneurship 2011, Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award, World Economic Forum on Africa 2012, and has been listed as one of Africa’s Most Successful Women, Forbes 2012.

Bethlehem will be at the GTBank Fashion Weekend to share her entrepreneurial journey as well as give business tips on how to make financial success from Fashion.