“Despite the difficulties linked to the existence of Ebola in Guinea, I was able to strive because of the training that I received in the blueincubator» said Mamadou Saïd Diallo, founder of Artex Guinea, met Saturday at the International Fair of Conakry. Since the opening of this major international market in the People’s Palace of Conakry, Mamadou Saïd Diallo has been exhibiting his products and creations. He is being trained, supervised and advised in the Blueincubator. In this interview, Mr Diallo evokes the Blueincubator and his expectations.
Why did you start practicing the craft of weaving?
I started this craft in an NGO located in the Fouta region and created by a Finn who was helping local people to value the Guinean textiles. 15 years later, I decided to also contribute to the development of the Guinean local fabric by opening my own business. For me, weaving is an amazing traditional craft, which must not disappear in our modern society.
How did you find about the Blueincubator?
It was during an exhibition with Moroccan investors that I heard about the Blueincubator. I immediately signed up for the training. I have talent and experience in creating fabrics, but I have difficulties on everything related to computers. With the Blueincubator, I meet young entrepreneurs who help me automate my creations and manage my communication. This training for entrepreneurs allows me to manage the little amount of money that I make.
What has changed for you after this training?
Previously, I wove strips of 30 cm width. Today, I weave strips of over 1.30 m wide, which is a satisfactory result. I have also managed to make fabrics that do not rub off, resistant to washing machines at any degree. With my weaving, I make curtains, shirts but also 100% cotton tunics.
What are your expectations of the project?
It is to continue the training, but especially to encourage and support young innovative entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurship is misunderstood by Guineans. With such a project to explain to young people the value of entrepreneurship, the management of funds, I think it will help reduces the unemployment rate in our country.
How are the customers at the International Fair of Conakry?
For now, customers don’t matter much to me. My goal by participating in this fair is to showcase the Guinean textiles. To achieve this, we need the involvement of everyone, and especially urge Guineans to buy local textiles and promote it internationally.