Raised in the Netherlands with a Congolese cultural background (Nsimba) Valene Lontanga is a woman who reaches a global audience through her bi-cultural stories and style aesthetics. She studied International Lifestyle Studies at Fontys Academy of Creative Industries in Tilburg, where she graduated with a bachelor in trend research and concept development specialized in the fashion and lifestyle market in 2014. Always aiming to innovate and make a social impact, she started as a trend researcher at Vlisco’s brand innovation department in the same year. After travelling and initiating projects in between Africa and the West she began facilitating cross-cultural creative collaborations and exploring patterns of shifts in cultures to identify new meanings for the future.
Soon she co-founded a social initiative Stories of Near, centred in the African fashion realm, wherefore she wrote a part of a trendzine in 2016. A B2B report focused on how fashion can be used as a tool to bridge communities and cultures, while elevating untold stories of the continent to a global audience. After exploring different sides of the business of fashion she launched her own made in Africa clothing brand LIBAYA in 2017, producing ready to wear women’s wear.
Nsimba Valene creates and curates inspiring projects through trend research, creative direction, brand development, workshops and events. She founded thefofa.com in 2018, a fashion platform decoding the next global fashion stories inspired by Africa and evaluating how it gives meaning and impacts the future of fashion.
Her multi-cultural experience has helped her develop a flexible and inventive way of working from research, insights to creative solutions, in order to stay relevant in a fast-changing world. Being connected to a landscape of global talents, influencers and creative communities,  she is known as a well-spoken visionair missioned to help companies stay relevant in a divers and fast-changing world.
Her stories have been endorsed by VOGUE NL, L’OFICIELLE, ELLE, DESIGN INDABA, TROPENMUSEUM, OKAY AFRICA and more for her authentic ideas and meaningful collaborations, inspiring people to think in diversity and inclusion.

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