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Here are some diverse, women-owned businesses achieving success in Calgary

As part of International Women's Day, CTV News is highlighting three Calgary businesses founded by women of colour who are growing their own companies, and also supporting other women along the way.


Dina Ibrahim was a cashier at Homesense about three years ago when she founded her company Hyat Co. creating hijabs, which are fashionable headscarves for Muslim women.

While also completing a business degree at Mount Royal University, she won a $10,000 prize in a pitch competition.

She then pitched her employer's parent company, TJX Canada to carry her line of hijabs, and now her designs are sold at over 200 Winners and Marshalls stores across Canada.

"I'm super happy with where I am right now and the fact I was able to get in those stores, and put hijabs in the retailers. I think that's beautiful. You never see Muslim women models. Its nice to see that," said Ibrahim.

Dina Ibrahim says being an entrepreneur can inspire other Muslim women to pursue business ventures.

She says her business empowers shoppers that previously didn't see themselves represented in canadian stores.

"Having this accessibility not only makes it easier for people to practise their religion but also makes it easier for them to be stylish as well," she said.

Now 22, she plans to expand and include dresses for Muslim women.


Adeyodin Omotara became an entrepreneur in 2015 launching own beauty product line called Adoniaa, selling cosmetics in Calgary.

Originally from Nigeria she emigrated from the United Kingdom and completed leadership and business courses at Momentum, a financial literacy support charity in Calgary.

"It literally changed my life and accelerated the growth of my company," said Omotara.

She has expanded to three retail locations, her most recent storefront is a "collective" featuring several Black-owned businesses, located on the second floor of The Core shopping centre.

"I can help different women rise. I can help different women really succeed and help boost their confidence," she said.

She plans to continue to help other Black business owners enter the retail market, while selling her cosmetics and beauty products.

Adeyodin Omotara speaks with an employee at the Adoniaa Collective storefront in The Core shopping centre.


Omotara has also recently appeared as a guest speaker for an "All Things Bossy" event, a networking and mentorship organization aimed at Black women entrepreneurs in Calgary.

The creative operations director says the company was created to fill a gap in Calgary and provide local connections for women with similar lived experiences.

"Why not go at it together and go further and be empowered and inspired but also have the tangible resources required," said Jessie Alemayehu.

She adds that being "bossy" is not a negative connotation, but rather an empowering message for members.

"Not matter what you do, everything you do, can you boss up in life. Its all about your emotional, mental, physical journey that you are on as a woman," said Ashley Morgan, community and culture director for All Things Bossy. Top Stories

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