Fourteen years since Akon released his debut single, Locked Up, the Senegalese-American musician and entrepreneur has created a multi-million dollar brand and according to Black Enterprise.com, Akon owes a lot of his success to his sister, Khady Thiam Gueye.
The brand is said to be worth $80 million (.
Reporting for BlackEnterprise.com, Sequoia Blodgett writes that Khady is the founder of TMI Worldwide, the COO for KonLive, and chief brand officer for Bu Vision Entertainment, which is owned by her other brother, Abou 'Bu' Thiam.
"In addition to running these extremely successful operations, she provides strategic solutions to companies, entrepreneurs, and influencers on how to grow, expand, and maintain their brands," Sequoia adds.
According to BlackBusiness.org, Khady started out her career early and after receiving her bachelor's degree in Public Relations, she worked as an executive assistant for Akon. "Eventually," the article reports; "she was given more responsibility as the project manager of Akon Lighting Africa, where she led the PR strategy to spread awareness about the initiative's efforts worldwide."
While talking to Sequoia, Khady affirms that being a businesswoman has been fulfilling for her as much as it has been challenging. "In the beginning," she tells Black Enterprise, "it was a bit of a challenge because it can be hard for women to break out of administrative roles to making executive decisions. However, my presence is at the forefront to challenge the culture to show and set an example of how leaders can create environments where women with talent can flourish in leadership."
Khady, as a sister to two famous and well-established brothers, is unfazed by their success and the shadow this might create over her own. "The fact that they are family makes me go even harder," she tells Sequoia. "We are all so close and I know that in the end, them succeeding means success for me. Also, the good thing is that they shine in two totally different areas. That makes it easier for me branding wise and gives me more freedom to make sure that they get premium exposure in their territories."
The young entrepreneur and businesswoman is not done being a powerhouse in her own spotlight. She tells Sequoia that she hopes to achieve a lot more in the next three years. "I plan to launch my online school dedicated to entrepreneurs and creators to help guide them through their careers as well as get them on the right track to creating their family legacy," she says.
"I have [also] always dreamed of having my own makeup line that celebrates our melanin tones and would also repair and heal problematic skin. I plan to launch the makeup line within the next five years".
According to Flourish Africa, the mother of one, thanks her supportive husband and mother for her own success.
We're looking forward to her brand growing exponentially; enough for people to recognise her not as Akon's sister but as the successful businesswoman, Khady Thiam Gueye.
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