Businesses, in their truest form, are designed for one purpose – to make money. Many business owners also have a dual purpose when it comes to running a business. This purpose is something that is usually a passion which turns to profit. For Angela and Roi Lee, their business, Angela Roi, was built with the passion of making affordable handbags while also giving back to charity. We sat down to learn more about Angela Roi, future trends for the industry, and why the business was started.
Why did you start your business?
Growing up, my mother molded my interest in fashion; she bought me the best quality and most beautifully crafted handbags, always styling my outfits with impeccable taste, she showed me a whole new world. As I grew older, and independent of my parents, I learned the truth behind fashion. As a college student, it was too expensive to buy these handbags that I love and grew up with. I could no longer afford those high quality bags; I quickly realized no one sold quality bags with classic design for an accessible price. I thought, why can’t luxury be accessible? Expensive does not mean classy. Roi has always been a businessman, he discovered me and saw a future in the fashion industry with me. He saw my love for fashion and with his love for me, he found a way to intertwine our passions.
Angela & Roi’s core mission, Donate by Color was born when Roi and I attended a fashion show that supported AIDS with the red ribbon; we were inspired and applied the concept to the Angela & Roi handbag brand. We believe we can create a sustainable model where fashion consumerism meets philanthropy.
Roi’s father had diabetes and faced a serious cerebral hemorrhage when Roi was ten; this is when he realized the most significant factor in an individual’s life is their health. Together, we decided to focus on health issues when we started our company Angela & Roi. There are so many individuals and families in the world who struggle with health problems and don’t get enough support.
What future trends do you see in your industry?
The Angela & Roi brand set out to create a movement. We not only want to fulfill our mission, but also make it thrive and inspire change in others. Through our Donate by Color mission, we plan to build personal relationships with fighters whom we support through Angela & Roi donations.
The Ribbon Project is one of our newest campaigns under the Donate by Color mission where we help A&R followers support cancer & disease fighters with a personal touch.
Each fighter is associated with a specific health cause, and color. We include a postcard with each handbag that is bought, which includes the fighter’s photo, cause, and story. We ask our customers to write a hopeful message on the postcard and post the picture of the personal message on our Facebook Page. We also opened this opportunity up for our followers and our fighters to connect on our website, for those who just want to help support our fighters without purchasing a bag. We have saw an overwhelming response from our followers, through loving and caring messages. Our fighters feel the wealth of spirit coming from Angela & Roi, and have shown their appreciation for all the support.
We want fashion to thrive in the hands of philanthropy, not only with Angela & Roi, but the entire industry can indulge positive change. We created Angela & Roi to see cause, significance, and meaning when someone wears an Angela & Roi handbag.
What characteristics do you feel make up a good entrepreneur? (I answered in my favorite quotes)
“Create a life that feels good on the inside, not one that just looks good on the outside. “
“If you cannot do great things, do small things in a great way.”
“Instead of looking at the hundred reasons to quit, look at the thousand of reasons not to give up.”
“Like wildflowers; you must allow yourself to grow in all the places people thought you never would.”