Inspired by both of their mothers’ determination to leave a legacy for their families, Ikaneng Khunoana and his girlfriend, Lesego Lesetedi, have decided to carve their own path. For them, their business Ellen Rose Fresh Flowers and Gifts is all about solidifying unforgettable memories for their customers. Khunoana told Vutivi News that the business’ name was inspired by Lesetedi’s grandmother, who was a very prosperous businesswoman who motivated her entire family to excel.
And Lesetedi’s mother started a property business called Ellen Rose Properties in 2009, which Khunoana joined as an employee before starting his own business with Lesetedi in 2020. The Tshwane-based entrepreneur also comes from an entrepreneurial background and was inspired by his own mother. “My mother is a florist and started her journey as a businesswoman after getting a divorce from my father, following a 20-year marriage,” he told Vutivi News.
“She worked her way up from the bottom and started with just one shop, which extended to three shops in Tshwane. “I was inspired by both of these strong women and decided to join forces with my partner to launch this venture,” Khunoana said his business provided flowers and gift boxes for all occasions. The flowers were either sold as a bouquet or a combination of gifts and flowers, which they got from a florist market in Johannesburg.
The company also organised special occasions such as picnics. “We sell the experience, and for me, my favourite part of this work is getting to see the reaction of the gift recipients,” he said. “That in itself is priceless,” Khunoana said that before they operated in Pretoria East, they worked in Mabopane where their first contract was with a Spar. “We were making really good money, but we had to relocate. It was difficult to run the business while on the other side of Tshwane due to transportation costs and having to produce more flowers than we could sell,” he said.
“We took the risk to move and as a result, we had to restructure, strategise and improve our business model in order to maximise profit. “We made more money in Tshwane East because we spent serious capital on marketing, and we also discovered that the residents in Tshwane East really love flowers and have an appreciation for them,” Khunoana said that officially launching their business in Pretoria East in September was by far one of his greatest achievements. “There was a huge turnout for the event, and I was so overwhelmed to learn that so many people love flowers,” he said. The couple’s dream is to open a few branches around the country. “I want Ellen Rose Fresh Flowers and Gifts to be the go-to name for flowers and gifts,” he proudly said.