This is part of a year-long ‘Love for Local’ series called NB365: portraits of New Brunswick entrepreneurs, businesses, and organizations. Huddle is a media partner with Love for Local. Today we feature Bolaji Akintola of Divine African Market, in Fredericton.
Divine African Market was birthed to meet the food needs of Africans in New Brunswick. Prior to my relocation from Nigeria in April 2018, I made several inquiries about the province from friends who landed before me.
I was informed that Fredericton is a great and peaceful city to live and raise a family but that there were no varieties of African food. I was advised to bring as much food as I can to keep me going for at least 3 months before searching for alternatives.
I saw this as an opportunity instead of a challenge and decided to start an African Grocery Store to bridge this gap. The business was subsequently registered on 7th June 2018.
I started selling from my little apartment and moved the business to my basement after buying a house in May 2019. A few months after selling from my basement, I knew the volume was getting bigger and needed to take the business out of the house.
The physical store was eventually opened on December 23rd, 2019. This is the beauty of local businesses: with support from our community, we can grow and offer even more.