• In addition to trendy street-styling for men and women, the business is about
    empowering young women and girls through networking, mentoring and
    leadership skills. The goal is to have communities of girls who are happy, healthy
    and confident, writes GOSEGO MOTSUM

Following the successful launch of the Cotton On Store in 2019, the Group
has extended its footprint by launching two additional stores
in Gaborone. Nestled at Airport Junction Mall, the fashion lifestyle retailer
has officially opened its first Factorie and Typo stores last week. The Cotton On Group, which comprises of eight brands, recently broadened their offering inBotswana.

“There is nothing that excites us more than making a positive difference in people’s lives,” said Natalie Wills, Country Manager for Africa at the launch. “We stand for diversity, empowering people of all backgrounds to express their style and making their
mark on the world.” “The two brands are all aboutpeople expressing their individu-
ality and style in their own way. There is always interesting stuff to check out in both these stores. Both stores opened on the 19th of May but we decided to celebrate
this milestone through an official launch. The exciting part is that we have had our very own team that grew up in the Cotton On Store going on to become managers of the two new stores.” Factorie is an on-trend, streetstyle fashion brand with a finger on the pulse of youth culture while Typo is a disruptive, inclusive brand that provides creators
with the tools they need to build their brands in style. According to Wills, Typo exists
to make everyday life anything but ordinary so that individuals can build a space that is optimistic and inspired, enabling creators to make content that matters to them.
“We live for sweats and ontrend street styling that takes any look to the next level,” she added. “We connect with customers by staying on the pulse, elevating our customers and growing with them.”

The Cotton On Group has grown steadily since the first store opened in Geelong, Austra-
lia in 1991. Since then, their eight brands have grown to over 1,300 stores across 22 countries. They present themselves as committed to meaningful change for this
and future generations, building sustainable futures and supporting and protecting people and theplanet. These brands cover categories that include men’s and women’s
apparel, childrenswear, footwear, stationery, giftware, homeware, sleepwear, activewear, and teen and youth fashion and a philanthropic arm called Cotton On Foundation.The Cotton On Foundation Botswana Project Partnership 2022 was established in Gaborone in
2010. In addition, the African Women Leadership Academy (TAWLA) was created to em-
power young women and girls through networking, mentoring and leadership skills training. The Cotton On Foundation has partnered with TAWLA to support the rollout of a mentoring programme for 35 teenage girls.

The programme pairs the girls with trained, caring and responsible mentors. The mentors attend two workshops that focus on empowering them with the skills required to ensure that their mentees can learn and thrive in a positive and safe environment. The programme will be rolled out in a series of eight workshops over
six months. The workshops promote wellbeing while developing leadership skills and resilience. The programme also addresses issues related to teenage pregnancy,
substance abuse and HIV/AIDS awareness to empower a community of girls who are happy,healthy and confident. The programme will conclude with a graduation-style celebration. Said Wills: “Cotton On Group works to create a collaborative and inclusive culture, focusing on inspiring, caring for, and growing people through belonging, well-
being, reward and recognition and learning and development. With an entrepreneurial spirit embedded in our culture, we work to provide unforgettable experiences for our team and customers.”