When first starting her fashion business, Ziqi Deng needed to pull together an Instagram page to test out some features of the tool, but she had to get creative with a $0 budget. So, as any entrepreneur would do, she gathered some of her best friends together, bought some equipment for a photo shoot in her home, and returned everything within the day. She stuck to her $0 budget and launched a journey that would result in 13,000 social media followers, multiple brand deals, and, best of all, a positive impact on the fashion industry.
Learning to overcome obstacles and "work with what you have" are skills that Ziqi watched her mother illustrate time and time again. As a female entrepreneur in China, Ziqi's mother was constantly breaking barriers, navigating new waters, and competing in male-dominated spaces. She built a women's apparel export company from the ground up and it has been a successful presence in the industry for over 20 years now. Ziqi has watched her mother move through changes and challenges with poise, grace, and more determination than she ever thought possible.
Though she was lucky to have a model of what entrepreneurial success could look like, she knew she wanted to take on a new and even more exciting endeavor. Even before graduating from Duke University with her degree in statistical science and public policy, Ziqi took a gap year away from school and worked 4 jobs. The same year, she started her own minimalist home goods brand as a third-year college student. During her first business venture, she learned how to sell products in the e-commerce space, navigate supply chain challenges, and reach a new network of customers. She was even able to convince the Duke university store manager to customize some of her products to sell at the Duke university store.
Ziqi met Tatiana Tian, another passionate entrepreneur that was ready to take the leap into the business world. The first iteration of their business was a set of livestream commerce tools that were designed to help companies use livestream shows to increase their brand's exposure and make sales. To illustrate these tools, they started a fashion brand, learning the ins and outs of the fashion industry along the way. Even though Ziqi had been exposed to the industry throughout her childhood, she and Tatiana noticed many pain points with manufacturing, supply chain, lead times, and quality issues that came up over and over again for fashion brands all over the world. They then pivoted their focus, turning RE(SOURCE) into what it is today.
RE(SOURCE) uses technological solutions to address some of the most common pain points in the fashion industry; it relies on 3D tools to make mock-ups within 1 day and a vertically integrated process flow allows the entire production process to be within 2 weeks. The combination of supply chain mastery and technology utilization leads to less waste in the fashion industry and higher rates of customer satisfaction. Reducing lead times in fashion is a complex, multi-faceted challenge, but RE(SOURCE) offers a holistic solution.
It can be hard to change how an entire industry works, but with the right level of innovation and grit, Ziqi and Tatiana are proving that it's possible. Targeting independent businesses and niche fashion brands, RE(SOURCE) is ready to help businesses grow and scale with forward-looking, sustainable infrastructure. Ziqi had a great example from her mom when she was young, but there's no denying that RE(SOURCE) is her own contribution to the fashion industry. She's leaving a legacy for an industry that is notoriously hesitant to change and disruption.