Five ways to cash in on Mandela’s legacy

Nelson Mandela is not only an international political figure, but for a handful of a people, a thriving business brand.

1. Start an exclusive shirt line

Madiba presidential shirt from Presidential
Madiba presidential shirt from the Presidential brand. PHOTO:

The Presidential Shirt, also known as the Madiba Shirt, became a part of Mandela’s signature style when Desré  Buirski, a then-struggling fashion designer, presented the former president with a shirt during a visit to Cape Town  in 1994. Mandela then requested Buirski to tailor more shirts for him, catapulting her unique printed shirts to  widespread popularity. Today, Buirski’s shirt forms a part of a larger Presidential men and women’s clothing range.


2. Slap the Mandela name on to your elite wine label

A range of the House of Mandela wines. PHOTO: The Grio
A range of the House of Mandela wines. PHOTO: The Grio

If it’s a taste of a powerful legacy you want, take a swig of a House of Mandela wine. Founded by Mandela’s daughter  Maki and granddaughter Tukwini, the range includes a Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon  Blanc, Pinotage and a Sparkling varietal. History can now be savoured in one sip.


3. Turn a prison number into a worldwide awareness campaign

The different 46664 bangles. PHOTO: Make Luxury Count
The different 46664 bangles. PHOTO: Make Luxury Count

Mandela’s log-standing awareness campaign on the spread of AIDS in South Africa took a global step when music  artists such as Bono from U2 and Bob Geldof became headline acts of the 46664 AIDS charity concert in South Africa in the early 2000s. This  sparked more 46664 concerts in Spain, Norway and London. Artists such as Beyoncé, Annie Lennox and the Soweto  Gospel Choir have since been a part of the AIDS awareness concerts. The 46664 bangles were also introduced to  generate funds to go towards the HIV and AIDS cause, but have also become an in-trend statement for many. A  46664 Fashion brand also exists, and money generated from the sales go towards the Nelson Mandela Foundation.


4. Start a reality show

Zaziwe Dlamini-Manaway and Swati Dlamini. PHOTO: Essence Magazine
Zaziwe Dlamini-Manaway and Swati Dlamini. PHOTO: Essence Magazine

Your life has a high chance of being endlessly interesting to common folk, particularly if your surname is “Mandela”.  Following their grandfather’s legacy in the public eye – albeit for a different purpose – Mandela’s granddaughters  Zaziwe Dlamini-Manaway and Swati Dlamini decided to star in their own reality show aptly called “Being Mandela”.  The two are also daughters of Zenani Mandela, the daughter of Mandela’s former wife Winnie. The reality show, as  expected, was a flop, and many accused the siblings of exploiting the Mandela name.


5. Manufacture some “Randelas” and collectible coins

The current bank notes sporting Mandela's face. PHOTO: BidorBuy
The current bank notes sporting Mandela’s face. PHOTO: BidorBuy

Anyone can carry a piece of Mandela in their pocket since the introduction of new banks notes sporting the great  man’s visage in 2012. A number of Mandela commemorative coins have since been made, with some being sold for  up to R150, 000. This includes a rare 90th birthday R5 Mandela coin which sold for roughly R100, 000.


Sources: Presidential brand, SA Coin, Heritage Link Brands, 46664 Bangles, Nelson Mandela Foundation

Back to top button